This month Chris and I have our hands full with family fun.
A teacher once said to me as I was complaining of time cut short in the studio, “you must have a life in order to make art.”
I have been practicing that teaching as I spend my days like a tourist seeing the sights and enjoying time away from the studio.
Last week, the parents and I spent day at the Palm Springs Art Museum looking at the Unsettled exhibition. It is a massive show featuring the artwork of Los Angeles artist Ed Ruscha along with works by 79 other artists covering 2,000 years of territory.
The title, Unsettled, refers to our times and as curator JoAnne Northrop explains:
“I feel like we are living in unsettled times, and that’s not only inclusive of nature, with all the massive fires and earthquakes…but also extends to the socio-political movement.”
These are big issues with complicated perspectives but I thought the show provided a traversable path to conversation about the greater West and our place in it.
Zittel’s practice encompasses spaces, objects and modes of living in an ongoing investigation that explores the questions “How to live?” and “What gives life meaning?”
She says about her artwork:
“I don’t want people to be uncomfortable, but I don’t want them to be comfortable either. You know when you’re alone with yourself and feel jangly and on edge? But in a way thats the most cathartic thing in the world. Almost painful, but so good?”
I hope you can make the time to see Unsettled as well as the incredible outdoor installation exhibition Desert X. Right now the valley is filled with creation.
On a more personal note, The Artists Council, a newly independent non-profit organization, organization which has helped me to connect with artists and exhibit my work, will be holding their inaugural juried exhibition Metamorphosis.
My painting, Ciervo, a new work about interconnectedness and transformation has been selected for inclusion in the exhibition. If you are in town, I hope you can join us for the opening reception on March 28th from 6-8 PM At the Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Desert. The venue is located at 72-567 Highway 111 Palm Desert California, 92260.
For me, the theme reinforces the inevitability of change and its necessity for growth. But change is not always easy. It requires letting go, death and rebirth. For example, here in the valley we have been blessed by the beauty of the painted lady butterfly migration. Amidst this wonder, I am faced with the fragility and fleeting existence they embody.
Understanding the breadth of human experience requires a comprehension and acceptance of metamorphosis.
The only constant is change and within the ever-changing turnings of mind and body, I find an ever changing truth.
In my paintings, pleasure and pain represent the ends of a rainbow that is human experience. Sensation in the body triggers a response which arises as pleasure, pain or anything in between.
Attachment and aversion to these temporary states not only lessens the expanse of our existence but the resulting reaction distorts our perceptions.
While painting, I use the signifiers of body and abstraction to help advocate living a fully alive life. Using icons from history, direct experience and my imagination, I create characters and their worlds that allow, invite and embody change.
Free from the disabling distortions of glomming on and avoidance, my work advocates metamorphosis.
The exhibition runs through April 12th so even if you can’t make the opening, please stop by.