One of the great things about living in a postmodern world is the ability to time travel. For instance, over the past two weeks (in preparation for a course I’ll be tutoring on early 20th century art movements) I’ve been immersed in books on futurism, dada, surrealism. From my DVD collection, I’ve watched a couple of French New Waves (1961), a couple of Film Noirs (1940s), as well as a comedy, Georgy Girl (1964). I’ve listened to Duke Ellington (1930s-40s), Rachmaninov (1930s), Kate Bush’s The Red Shoes (1993). I’ve tried to ignore TV, which has been mostly about football, though my son’s had it flickering in the background. And because the grey skies haven’t been too much of a temptation, I’ve neglected the garden, stayed inside and painted. A couple more ‘people in Norwich’ paintings – and I did these much more quickly than the earlier two, worrying less about trying to get things ‘right’. And then, working on a smaller scale, a series of collages (influence of cubism and dada discernible?). All to be continued.
I find with art, as with many things (the taste of wine, for instance) the more you do it the more you need it. Saturday, elbow-deep in newspaper, PVA and acrylics, I couldn’t get enough. Sunday, I made the mistake of trying to make time for other things. Like watching the Andrew Marr Show, and reading the Observer. (Do I really need to know about Tuesday’s emergency budget before Tuesday?)
Howard Hodgkin was talking to Andrew Marr. He must be an interviewer’s nightmare, he gives so little of himself, so much the opposite of his vibrant, colourful paintings. He says he’s never enjoyed painting, that it’s all been pain. He’s so unlike David Hockney, for example, who’s always chatty and enthusiastic about his work.
Below are two of my ‘people’ paintings. They probably won’t find their way into a prestigious gallery, but at least they weren’t painful.
Books I've reviewed for Amazon and what that says about me; a moneyless world.