Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Paint and Piss

I don't know if it is the company of a giggling five-year-old, whose sense of humor hovers around the nether region ("Did you hear that? I said BUTT. ahahahahh!!!") or a three month old, whose expressions of contentment include delicious smiles, butterfly eyelashes, and clear liquid arcs during changing time. Anyway, I had to look up the etymology of "pee." How did we get there from "urinate"? As I suspected, the French, and their onomatopoeia, are to blame. The origin is pissier, 13th cent. Old French.

My friend asked me (and several other painters) what I like about brushstrokes, as he is writing a painting program. Without thinking too much, I responded that I enjoy, but rarely produce, the unexpected. Think John Singer Sargent, especially landscapes. When the brush pulls two colors together to make an accident that tells the whole story.

Then I thought a bit more, and thought of Lichtenstein's paint stroke sculptures, and realized how important the feathery separations, due to the hairs and structure of the brush, are. Also, the pooling of ink or paint that can create a subject within a subject, as in this painting of wa, the kanji for harmony. What is important to you abot the brushstroke?

My friend Anurag suggested the painting below:

1 comment:

  1. I would say the almost accidental quality of expression.

    A brushstroke can convey so much through its texture, almost by chance. Of course skill is part of it, and yet much of it truly just happens.