Monday, October 5, 2015

studio struggles

this year has been pretty up and down creatively.  i've done a couple of pieces that i'm quite proud of, including the Seurat mural, but for the most part, i've really been struggling in the studio. typically i make work that has this visual narrative poetry to it, each piece telling enough of a story to be rather succinct in its statement, while still being open to interpretation by the audience, however i've found that i'm getting tired of the images and the aesthetic that i've been working in over the past few years. i've made assemblages just to tear them apart. i've printed piles of paper that have never seen the light of day. i've painted several pieces just to paint over them with something else and then buff them of any imagery at all. i just can't seem to find something that i'm satisfied with. if art is a meditation, then this period is the search more than the find. but it is really wearing on my patience. i've never had a problem producing piles of work in a given year, but i feel like, this year, the time that i've put in is not evident in the amount of finished work i've produced.

it started with making zines in the winter. i love books and the idea that something static can be time based also, so zines were an affordable and repeatable media to play around in. after a month or so of playing around with the imagery, message, and layout, i realized that it was too time consuming to produce a hand printed zine in the manner that i was working in. so i finished one copy each of 2 different zines. then i started in on the assemblages, which are easy for me to build and very difficult to paint. i started splicing and cropping my imagery attempting to create a kind of abstract expressionism in images and message that i was calling social abstraction. then i moved my studio. and i started repainting assemblages that i wasn't happy with and making new ones as well. very few of which are not still painted white and hanging on the wall so my studio. its just been a struggle.

these days everything seems so overdone, like artists are screaming for attention (as evident by the onslaught of street art everywhere), and i'm not immune to that approach. lately though i've been thinking that quiet is a better approach. i very much believe that creating is a meditation, and i want that aspect of creating to be evident in my finished work, but it's been very difficult for me to overcome the idea of image and narrative. hopefully this down period will not continue much longer, but it makes me thankful for the times that feel like my work just finishes itself. these days, though, i'm just punching through it and wasting a lot of paint. here's a look at some of my underwhelming works from the year. ps...only some of these still exist in the state they were photographed in.

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