Tuesday, November 06, 2007

My Grandfather's Work is Do-Do

Does one hyphenate do-do?

Either way, it's one thing to be disavowing the work of a now-dead relative (even if it turns out to be the real shit). It's entirely another to be of that opinion that one's own work is do-do. Merde. Crap. An embarrassment. An utter failure.

Is it my imagination, or does my current opus, "Close, But No Cigar", my reinterpretation of Chuck Close's famous self-image, resemble more closely one John Joseph Nickolson? Better known as Jack.

This is where we stand:



Oy. I'd show you more, but really, I can't stand the humiliation.

My work is do-do.

A ray of hope appears...

I will say this: I do like the little green dots. Can you see them? Here--if you envision the canvas being divided into a grid of one foot squares, the points of intersection of the lines that would create such a grid are now marked by little dots of, I think, hunter green, straight from the tube.

This is engaging on a number of levels. First, they come straight from the tube, so each one has a little coney-head, kind of like a very flat Hershey's Kiss. Second, the painting, other than the green dots, is either black or gray. The actual painting (meaning the one Close did, of which this is a reinterpretation) is monochromatic, but sepia-toned (if that's not contradictory). A light brown, if you will.

And what, dear reader, is brown if not a really dark green? It sure as hell isn't blue.

So it's those little dots that are going to keep me with this painting for now. Because otherwise I'd burn the thing.

The briefest note on personal dignity:

We all have our pride.

I really like the community of the Brooklyn Artists Gym. I like looking at other people's stuff, talking to them about it, etc. It makes having to put your shit away at the end of the night endurable.

When I don't like it is when the painting is going badly. The embarrassed silence--or at least what I imagine to be embarrassed silence--is deafening.

I can hear them thinking: "He showed some promise in his early career, but this Chuck Close thing really makes my eyes bleed."

We all have our pride. This is difficult. Pray for me.
You're talking to a bunch of heathens. You know that, right?
Yes I do.
So do you think they are really going to pray for you?
No. But Saint Peter once said, roughly: "Preach the Gospel always. Sometimes speak."
He said that?
It was either him or Vince Lombardi.
Wow. I bet you end up being a saint.
It wouldn't surprise me.

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