Wednesday, May 14, 2008

painting final

this should have been posted last friday... but finals ended and i got caught in the rapture of packing up my entire life from the past year. (we make way too much art at this school...)

the final project for painting was an "in the manner of" painting. i picked agnes martin from the list just because we had read "in the pursuit of perfection" in my elements class. i had never seen her work, but i loved her writing, so i figured i couldn't go wrong. imagine my surprise when i googled her and found countless canvases gridded out with squares and rectangles.

so why squares? these simple systems contain so much. they are martin's personal pursuit of perfection. perfection and order. together. that's some good stuff. and in my research and reading i found so many good quotes.

"her task was not to consider the viewer's response, but to follow her inspiration. only by truthfully representing her happiness would her work succeed in stimulating similar experiences in others. response to the work, she averred, depended on the observer's condition of mind... 'people get what they need from a painting, you find things... and it helps you make the next step. so, in responding to art work, people sort of make their steps... they've got to come ready, just like the artist was ready for his inspiration.' martin's absolute trust in the potential of people to take these steps and to discover truth about life."

"this tolerance of the human condition rested on martin's deep-seated faith in the goodness of life. she preached that life - and everything that happens in it - is positive; only our inability to perceive the total process blinds us to this."

i like that. i have this feeling that agnes martin and i are a lot alike. so glad i discovered her.

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