The only difference between me (a painter) and my father (a mechanic) is the oil on our hands. (2013)
Pure vision is more in need of an open mind than a perfect soul. (1993)
Cities need three things to survive as communities in which living is vibrant: “local” schools with no need for busing, varied faith centers serving the spiritual needs of residents and “piazzas” – community gathering places centered in such a way that neighbours of every stripe and hue can congregate and share.
Only through imitation do we develop toward originality. – John Steinbeck – American author (1902-1968)
The creative process should never be easy. Comfortable, yes. Easy, never.
Where anorexic “barbies” are the height of feminine esthetics and victimhood is the new heroism sold to children, contemporary creation of artworks cannot help but be expressively depressive.
The soul of a creative individual never dies. Only collective normality dies.
My whole childhood was spent being curious, analyzing, dreaming, creating, sketching. I was never lonely. Though the crime rate was significantly higher than today, I was never afraid to be alone in any part of our tough industrial city. I walked everywhere and nowhere for hours – discovering, observing and wondering – being sociable when encountering others but preferring silence. That no one recognized I had been gone most of a day pleased me. (Where adults are concerned, being invisible is sometimes a gift. . .)
Lacking physical prowess and coordination, I practiced sideline sportsmanship instead of sports. But despite being last chosen in playground activities and suffering from chronic daydreaming in class, I survived. . . with nary a syndrome nor a multifaceted deficit disorder applied to my child or adolescent being. Oddly, no one seemed perturbed by my being “different” – least of all, me.
By the age of 16, I was on my own – a stock clerk, living in a boarding house. . . blissfully being and becoming whatever it is we all become at one point.
And so. . . looking back. . . wondering as I have always done. . . What would my life have been? And who and what would I be now. . . if, like today’s hovered-over children, I had been forced to live a more ordained and most euphemistically called “normal childhood”?
The constant craving to render easy everything we do is the very act by which we ultimately destroy all vestiges of human creative potential.
If I paint a tomato, I am not trying to create a real tomato. I simply want to feel that delicious constricted reaction in my throat that fresh garden picked tomatoes cause. I want to taste it. Painting is a sensuous act. It cannot be reduced to a lowest common denominator exercise in photo-copying.