Thursday, January 21, 2010
Dancing with Bulls...?
I got a phone call yesterday from my publisher, Scott Usher, at the Greenwich Workshop. He told me they were interested in doing a canvas of And Then They Danced. I was super excited because the painting is different from anything they have printed before. I really like it too. It's a little mysterious to me, especially when I try to explain it. As I spoke with Scott, trying to put into words what I was thinking, it seemed a bit clearer.
I think bullfighting is a good metaphor for challenges that we face. It's about how we might perceive challenges. Challenges can be faced with dread, as ugly, unfair situations, or as an opportunity for growth. The figure and the bull in this painting are 'dancing.' Interestingly, I looked up 'matadora' which means 'murderer.' I don't think the figure is a murderer, she's a dancer, making something beautiful out of something that could be viewed as cruel and distasteful. Note there is no blood in this painting.
Why does this scene take place on a stage? Painting ideas is like putting them on a stage. Or maybe it is because the figure is vulnerable to the applause or boos of the crowd. Or maybe it's because the stage is the best place to dance. (The kitchen is a good place too.)
I think the best paintings allow the observer her/his own interpretation. Artworks whose interpretations can grow with the viewer are more meaningful longer.
The drawing above is another idea I'd like to paint in this series. It's about being ready to face the bull, taking it head on. I've got a lot of drawings I'd like to paint. I'm so excited.