Tuesday, June 27, 2006

rambling thoughts of the week

Because I'm a lame-o I only just saw the Klimt paintings at LACMA last week (I think, I lost track...) and true to my museum visits the one thing I went to see there turns out to be the least interesting thing to me.

What ended sucking me in was their American landscape stuff (now I'm wishing I had taken notes) but what I have been interested in recently is how location effects art. This is always most evident in landscape painting-- and what I found myself looking at was east coast landscapes vs. west coast, bare desert hills vs. dense, lush forestscapes. It stood out to me because I always hated landscapes and painted pretty crappy ones if I ever did (I had multiple art teachers tell me to not try them again). But that was on the east coast. The second I come to California I started painting/drawing landscapes every week. At first it was because I didn't know anybody and I didn't have any friends to model. But then I started getting into the landscape here. What I found was that I was just more drawn to paint the California geography. CA is more solid and concrete with grassy hills, rocky mountains, distance, as opposed to the dense bushes as opposed to the lush all-over greenery of Massachusetts. This was suprising because I was (at the time) prejudice against places with real trees and forests. I lived in the west until I was 11 and spent my whole childhood dreaming of tall green trees and hating the dead desert yellow color of everything around me. I'm kind of surprised I'm on this end of the country, but I've fallen in love with it- and the paintings it makes me do.

The other thing at LACMA that I saw was the Hockney exhibit. I can't say that I was a big Hockney fan before but I really enjoyed this exhibit for several reasons. First of all, I love portraits and figures of any sort. Could look at them all day, almost did. Also, again I'm really intrigued by the location an artists chooses to work in and how it inspires them-- or just seeps into their work. Sometimes I wonder if the whold NYC-starving artist thing limit's POV. I personally think that-- art being inspired by real life-- lives or dies based on what an artist surrounds themself with. And an artist like Hockney that incorporates his life so directly in his work is a very good example how an environment (social, geographic, cultural) plays a role. Just looking at his color choice-- turquoise, mint green, dusty rose, etc.-- these are not colors inspired by the northeast.

The last thing that the Hockney exhibit taught me is that I need to frikkin' start sketching more. I used to carry a sketchbook every where I went and would sketch every minute I had a down moment. The habit slowly faded when I stopped doing paintings strictly from sketches of brief real life moments. But even if I don't paint from my sketches, it is a fabulous way to slow down the process of observation as well as just get inspired.

That's all for tonight. Gotta go wash my brushes. (And my dinner dishes too probably while I'm at it, they'll get smelly.)


R U S S said...

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Bekka Teerlink said...

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