“Re – ________,” is my new series of watercolor paintings that plays with the reinterpretations of iconic images from the distant and not so distant past as well as several self imagined paintings.
The title “Re- _______,” sprang forth from the idea of re-doing something/anything in a new way. By re-interpreting an image I’m paying homage to artists of the past similar to the way a musician re-interprets a piece of music. The image re-imaged retains its power from the past and in its new form illuminate the present.
The first painting in the series titled Quilt began as a challenge to emulate a style of digital painting that I had been developing on the iPad. Painting on the iPad allowed me to produces whimsical lines, dashes and dots instantaneously. The displacement of dry time (typically associated with most other painting mediums) allowed for a dynamic rhythm to be played out between the medium/machine and myself. The digital paintings therefore appear to have a speed and tempo that only paintings in light could produce. While experimenting with Quilt, I was thrilled to discover that I could create a similar result using watercolors.
In the Painting “Silly Taking Guns To School” I have re-interpreted an iconic photograph of Clint Eastwood, pointing his gun straight out at whomever is looking at the picture. In my version I have transformed Eastwood’s figure into a masked childlike person. Titling the piece “Silly Taking Guns To School,” I bring into consideration the present day phenomena of children being killed while at schools, by other children and or adults, with guns. I have removed the machismo and sex appeal of a celebrity and replaced the image with absurdity. The gun is seen for what it is, a tool for killing, not an extension of manhood and sex appeal.
I have re-imagined William Bouguereau’s Dante and Virgil, 1850, focusing on the homoerotic and violent nature of the painting. Though we have come a long way in terms of LGBTQ rights there still remains the underpinning of age-old homophobia throughout the planet. In my version titled Fight, I have re-placed Bouguereau’s spectators with the present day viewer. There is no flying demon overhead ready to sweep the characters away into Hell. Individual perception is the measuring rod that determines how one sees and experiences the image.
Reality is up to us to create first within our minds. And until every child, woman and man is perceived with equal measure we must keep changing the point of view in order to change minds. Learning to see things in a new way is the key to changing perception. Changing the point of view is a quick way to get there. Give the eyes something new to observe and the brain changes. Consciousness expands with each new interpretation and we are able to see more and be more. I hope you enjoy the series.