I took a lesson out of my friend Penny’s playbook and re-worked eight paintings for my exhibition at Dolce Vita World Bistro that starts next week. Spent the last two days in intense artist mode, which I haven’t done in quite a while. It was a long time coming…and now I get it. I get what Penny feels. I get the lecture Anne gave me the last time we spoke – about making a commitment to painting because that is who you are. A painter. An artist. Much of what I told her about who and what I wanted to be seems inauthentic now.
Nobody knows the real me. Some of you know some of my secrets – but not all of them. It is strange to re-visit these paintings because I know what they are about, what they are still about and seeing them now as my future self, it is like I already knew the journey. I’m still on it, but, OMG, I am so much closer, if that makes any sense at all. It doesn’t have to. I know what I am talking about, lol, and so, I feel a profound sense of love for my old self. It’s weird and exhilarating, and just overwhelmingly emotional. I finally know where I am going and, of course, now that I know that, I can finally just enjoy the inspired action I will take to get there.
I added varnish to these paintings and chalkboard paint to the borders. Some were tweaked with twine knots and other mixed-media, a visual language insert to augment the journey, so to speak. These improvements are like the bridge that hurdles the gap between who I was and who I am now. Maybe I am not much different to the naked eye, but to me I’m vastly better, new and improved in mind and spirit. I am exposed and yet, still within the confines of my dreams where reality is soooo amazing. I love life as an artist. There’s truly no better way to live.
The series – did it have a name before? Because I don’t remember it. Regardless, I’m calling it Honor Thy Master. The original concept was the idea of the mandala as the first mark-making a human being creates. The circle and cross or X iconography on a white field is juxtaposed with torn postcards/notecards of artwork by Modigliani, Johns, Rauschenberg, Van Gogh, Michaelangelo…. I am honoring those master artists by adding their work to mine in combination with authentic mark-making. The addition of the chalkboard element, as always, is for the purpose of a third artist – the future owner of the work. My chalk marks will eventually erase and so, that person could add or subtract marks to the border with chalk themselves. In this way, we all join hands and make art together.
I am so proud of the way it all connects. The twine is the rope that binds us in both love and angst; we are free to choose. It is powerful and yet so simple, so perfectly cast that it gives me such a thrill to put these puzzle pieces together – like, literally…really!?! So much joy in the perfection of it.
I will install the show next weekend. There will be a reception on Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at 6:00pm at Dolce Vita World Bistro. A unique dining experience! Antonietta Vigliotti has prepared a special menu for the evening. I will create a public Facebook event page for it and invite all of my friends and acquaintences, and they will be able to invite friends too – the more the merrier, although it is not a huge space. I think the dining room serves up to forty people at a time. Reservations are in order for the dinner, but you can come and hang out at the bar too! It will be amazing to see everyone! I can’t wait! ❤
Dolce Vita World Bistro is located at 907 East Genesee Street, Syracuse, New York (13210). You can either call for reservations (315) 475-4700 or fill out the form on their web-site.