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Breathe


Breathe

100 x 160 cm oil on canvas

2020


"Breathe" is a revelation.

Sometimes when I am creating I get hopelessly attached to the outcome. Painting is not a process oriented on a goal. Painting (for me) is a state of mind, letting go of expectations and finding flow. It is incredibly liberating and also sometimes incredibly scary. It involves truly giving in.

This painting did not look at all like this when I conceived it. It was a burnt sienna hued, deep perspective, spacious view of what felt like a canyon. It was stuck, so stuck, because I had created a beautiful moving passage in the central part of the painting, and my fear of ruining it had paralyzed me as I tried to finish the rest of the canvas. I learned the "do not covet" rule so many years ago in art school. I coined the term and it keeps me on track... if I begin to covet any part of my work, a color, a brushstroke, a line, and then tiptoe around it for fearing of losing it, everything else falls apart. Hard. A metaphor for life.

So on that day when I realized I had fallen in the coveting trap, I turned around, walked outside and watched the sky and watered the flowers, and told myself to breathe and let go.

This painting is what happened next.

This is one of my finest works. It stands vertical and calls upon no landscape other than its own. Vertical paintings are for true art lovers, I think. It literally dances on the wall. It is now mounted at the bottom of a staircase and beckons you to sit on the top stairs and behold it. It changes with the light and time of day and your mood, and brings infinite moments for contemplation. It is serene. Frolicking. Wide open.

At the time of this writing, "Breathe" is available for collection in my Italy studio.