just DO!

 
I belong in the age group that witnessed the rise and the too-short shining of the star that was Eva Hesse.

She was w-a-y outside the box right from the start.

If Paul Cézanne was the “father of us all” according to Picasso, Hesse was the mother of us all. According to me.

The images I’ve chosen are lesser known examples of her work that particularly appeal to me; the quotes come from correspondence between Eva Hesse and Sol LeWitt.


 

I think art is a total thing. A total person giving a contribution.
It is an essence, a soul..
In my inner soul art and life are inseparable.

 

Wonderingmind Studio: Eva Hesse - collage

 

Just stop thinking, worrying, looking over your shoulder wondering, doubting, fearing, hurting, hoping for some easy way out, struggling, grasping …  Stop it and just DO!

 

Wonderingmind Studio: Eva Hesse, Right After, 1969. Silver gouache and pencil on paper, 22-1⁄4 x 15 inches

 

Don’t worry about cool, make your own uncool.  Make your own, your own world.

If you fear, make it work for you – draw & paint your fear and anxiety …

 

Wonderingmind Studio: Eva Hesse, No Title, 1969. Gouache, watercolor, silver and bronze paint on paper, 21-3⁄4 x 17-1⁄4 inches

 

You must practice being stupid, dumb, unthinking, empty.  Then you will be able to DO!

Try to do some BAD work – the worst you can think of, and see what happens, but mainly relax and let everything go to hell – you are not responsible for the world – you are only responsible for your work – so DO IT.  And don’t think that your work has to conform to any preconceived form, idea or flavor. It can be anything you want it to be …

 

Wonderingmind Studio: Eva Hesse, No Title, 1967. Ink on graph paper, 10-7⁄8 x 8-1⁄2 inches

 

I know that you (or anyone) can only work so much and the rest of the time you are left with your thoughts.  But when you work or before your work you have to empty you [sic] mind and concentrate on what you are doing.  After you do something it is done and that’s that.  After a while you can see some are better than others but also you can see what direction you are going.  I’m sure you know all that.  

You also must know that you don’t have to justify your work – not even to yourself.

 


For more information about Hesse:
http://www.theartstory.org/artist-hesse-eva.htm
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eva_Hesse

And my sincere thanks to Marcie Begleiter for sending this link to a wonderful article about the correspondence between Eva Hesse and Sol LeWitt:
Sol LeWitt’s Advice To Eva Hesse Is What Every Creative Person Needs To Hear
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/eva-hesse-letters-sol-lewitt_562f79ede4b00aa54a4b18d8

Marcie Begleiter is the director of the documentary film Eva Hesse, which premiered in May this year at the Whitney Museum of American Art. You can read more about it here:
http://www.evahessedoc.com
and here:
http://hyperallergic.com/207327/finally-a-documentary-about-eva-hesses-life-and-work/


Images sourced from the public domain.


immaculate imperfection

 

Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.
– Salvador Dali

Kintsugi Bowl named Seppo

 

The Kintsugi Cup

At the juncture of Perfection and imperfection,
Lays Immaculate Imperfection.

There, even the wounded and broken,
Emanate Blessings to all.

There, even those crushed in sorrow,
Are breathless with Bliss.

There, even those moving in desire,
Breathe Fullness and Completion.

There, even those grasping endlessly,
Know Surrender and Grace.

There, even those not yet perfected,
Live beyond the Hell of perfect and imperfect.

This can only be grasped,
If you stand…

Where Heaven and Earth Embrace,
And Perfect Love imbues Imperfection,

Like a kintsugi cup,
Shattered and broken,

Imperfections… not hidden,
But Illumined.

Ineffable Sublimity,
Immaculate Imperfection.

– Chuck Surface

 


Chuck Surface has a cyber-oasis of poems at gardenofthebeloved.com


Kintsugi: The Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with a lacquer resin sprinkled with powdered gold.

The tea bowl above, made by Hon’ Ami Koetsu (1558-1637), is called Seppo, which means Snow-capped Mountain. One of the most outstanding Japanese artists of the early 17th century, Koetsu was famous for his tea aesthetics, landscape gardening, poetry, lacquering and pottery.

This very famous tea bowl was repaired with gold varnish. The cracks in the bowl were filled with a type of resin, then lacquered and covered with gold powder. The repairs were given the poetic interpretation of melting snow and streaming water, hence the name ‘Seppo’.

Collection: Hatakeyama Memorial Museum of Fine Art, Japan.

Beauty in the art of repair – an informative article about traditional Kintsugi repair.


red – rouge – rot – rosso – rojo

 
I am having a love affair with red at the moment. Maybe it’s a winter thing.

As I indulge myself cruising around artstack, pinterest, and the bulging folders of artworks on my hard drive – works saved over many years, just-in-case – I notice my heart reaching out towards those pieces that are unashamedly vibrant with red, red, red – red a hundred ways; in every language red’s wild energy makes human beings stop, sit up, and most often, smile. (Oh yes, I’m aware of the connections this colour can have with anger and frustration, but for most of us, it’s the colour of life.) Here are a few favourites that get my smile muscles going and make my heart happy.


 

Henri Matisse - The Red Studio

Henri Matisse – The Red Studio, 1911

Museum of Modern Art, New York City


 

Colin McCahon - Ahipara,1970

Colin McCahon – Ahipara, 1970

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa


 

Georgia O'Keeffe - Black Door with Red, 1954.

Georgia O’Keeffe – Black Door with Red, 1954

Chrysler Museum of Art, Ghent, Virginia


 

Deborah Barlow - Colasee

Deborah Barlow – Colasee

deborahbarlow.com


 

Fabienne Verdier - Shen (La Quintessence)

Fabienne Verdier – Shen (La Quintessence)

fabienneverdier.com


 

Jean Miro - Paysage

Jean Miro – Paysage

National Gallery of Australia


 

Diane Foug - Red

Diane Foug – Red

dianefoug.com


 

Mark Rothko - Untitled (Red)

Mark Rothko – Untitled (Red), 1958

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne


 

Emily Mason - Slipped Beyond, 2009

Emily Mason – Slipped Beyond, 2009

lewallen contemporary art


 

Shane Drinkwater - Red 2

Shane Drinkwater – Red 2

on artstack


Do you have favourite red paintings? How do they affect you? If you’re an artist, do you work with strong reds?

I’ve only played with red in a small way – when I was working with dyes on silk. Oh the lustre of red silk! (Interestingly, one of those pieces won a National award.)

I can feel a reunion with RED coming on: watch this space.


art does matter

 
Why do I love Patricia Sullivan’s blog Art Does Matter?  I love the mix and variety of art and craft she features – jewelry, sculpture, painting and the oft-neglected fiber arts. I enjoy reading her perceptive reviews of exhibitions in her neighborhood (Philadelphia) and other important shows in the US. I find the way she writes about her own practice and creative process both enlivening and inspiring.  And I love the way she has been a loyal supporter of this little blog over the years.  If art matters to you, Art Does Matter is a blog worthy of a place on your blogroll.

 

Patricia Sullivan - Widget Locket #3

Patricia Sullivan: “Widget Locket #3: Homage to Art Nouveau”
chased/repoussé sterling silver, patina, plexiglas, archival paper
hand-fabricated chain/clasp, 21″ x 1.75″ x .25″, 2013. Photo: P. Sullivan

I design and typeset the two-dimensional interior news’ widget piece in Illustrator and draw out the decorative motifs that I chase and repoussé in silver. The 2-D graphic piece is printed in color on archival paper and set inside behind clear plexiglas that I hand-saw and polish to snap-fit into the octagonal-shaped oxidized silver locket body. Because I use materials like metal, paper, acrylic and sometimes fabric in my work, each jewelry piece becomes more of a mixed media composition that’s actually a wearable container for our recollection of soon-to-be-outdated technology.

Patricia Sullivan - Widget Locket #4

Patricia Sullivan: “Widget Locket #4: Homage to Mexico”
(front and reverse detail) Photo: P. Sullivan

… this locket’s chased patterning is derived from the history of the decorative arts of Mexico, such as the elaborate patterns found in ceramic or copper/tin tiles. I use chasing and repoussé on metal (a technique common in the history of Mexico’s metalworking genre) to create a beautiful exterior on the locket. Once the locket is opened, it reveals text that is printed on archival paper designed and typeset in Adobe Illustrator. The paper is cut and pressure-fit tightly into the locket’s rear octagonal piece and set behind polished Plexiglas hand-sawed to fit the exact shape of the locket. The entire locket body, hand-fabricated sterling silver oval chain and hollow-constructed silver clasp are oxidized to give this piece a darker, more “age-old” overall look.

[Notes sourced from Patricia’s blog. Click on the screenshot to read more.]

Patricia Sullivan's blog - Art Does Matter


I paint with my back to the world

 
Yesterday I moved home and studio. Body and mind need R&R. What could be better than a cup of tea and some wry wise reminders from painter Agnes Martin about what matters? I love what she shares about staying in bed until she knows exactly what she wants to paint. Ahhh.

 

Agnes Martin - Gratitude 2011

Agnes Martin – Gratitude – 2011

 

I don’t have any ideas of my own
and I don’t believe anybody else’s,
so that leaves me a clear mind …
– Agnes Martin