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(These paintings are up at Extra Gallery, NYC, now through Nov 1st.)

I began work on these paintings in the middle of the summer. The panel shapes came first, then the words followed. Friends and family members went in and out of the hospital. Quietness settled in. The words that are a part of this set of paintings wound themselves in & out of my days. I wrote them down. I crossed them out. I worked on the paintings in my mind, the place I’m most accustomed to working. The actual painting had to wait a spell, as I worked a plan to have the panels made; they were finally cut for me, for free, gratis, what a gift. I don’t own any electric saws.

The painting work became a complex paint in & paint out experience, referring back to the written work, forgetting it necessarily, and coming back in. The paintings began as one painting in five parts, and everything felt fragmented as the paintings made clear that they were not parts of a whole, but each whole in themselves. I ended up with five paintings. Finally I reached the point where I could work with them individually, instead of corralling the five in a group like messy-headed rowdy children being herded in one direction. Because you know that never works.

So I worked with the connected paintings, then made my way back to the words. The pieces of phrases that had been with me all summer arranged themselves into the story I have had with me for some time. I’m not posting the poem at this point, but the poem is there- it’s in the paintings (for the most part, not that you can read anything clearly.) This has been a step in the #within project for me. I started out placing factual statements into paintings, things plainly understood if they were read (though of course they were hidden/cut apart/buried.) And I have gotten to the point where the text for the #within paintings are another layer–poems–and there are no plain statements, and all of a sudden I am composed. In a manner of speaking. :)

Sort of what is written in the press release:

This is a set of paintings that bring attention to the mental shift that takes place when one enters, waits within, and then exits a space. The layers of encaustic paint and hidden text activate the tension between space and void, here and there, now and then. The paintings are hung in this order to be read from right to left: “Happening before I”, “Is the place of”, “Neither here nor”, “Leave me with”, and “I am left”. The titles are taken from a five stanza poem I wrote in conjunction with these paintings. Portions of the poem are buried into the paintings.

Extra Gallery NYC “While You Wait”
Oct 6 – Nov 1, 2011

The Extra Gallery is located in a semi-private space in Chelsea in New York City. If you would like to make arrangements to view the exhibition or would like more information, please contact Brian Dupont via email at briandupont@gmail.com.

Press Release is here.

This is Week #39 of #within.