I selected one painting from each of the four Gallery Chapters,
where you can go to view them. The process of choosing them
was difficult because I believe that William Carlos Williams
was right when he said that each painting was a self-portrait
of the artist. However, the autobiography of any painting should
never interfere with your own interpretations of and connections
with the work.
Gallery Chapter One:
"Environment Seventeen" - In 2002, I was obsessed
with doing a series of collages, which I made in pairs. It turned
out to be a long process beginning with cutting the watercolor
paper squares, taping then onto my board two by two, painting
them with acrylics and collaging scraps of paper and pieces
of photographs cut from pictures of my paintings. Mounting them
on board, varnishing them, and floating them in black metal
frames were the final steps in the process. You may have noticed
many paintings from the Environment series on the website. It
took me 38 pieces to get it out of my system, in a burst of
creativity following a close friend's death. From the first
Environment to the last, the subject, as abstractly as it is
shown, seemed to be rooted in imaginary places, but filled with
real references. In Environment Seventeen, skyscrapers flew
out of my brushes. I was airborne. It felt fiery and dangerous.
I was headed into the skyscrapers. It was September 11th, 2001.
Gallery Chapter Two:
"Transition II" - In 2004, I was (and still am) obsessed
with painting rocks into my work. This painting was the seventh
in what has become a series of twenty-two to date. You can click
onto Judy's Journal June 2005 to read what I was thinking about
the appearance rocks in my work. Of all the paintings, "Transition
II" is the most frightening to me. The colors are visceral.
The rock wall is gritting its teeth in anticipation. The sky
is dense with shades of thick liquid alizeron crimson. Hurtling
toward the surface is
a rock? A cloud? You cannot tell
if it is innocent and harmless, or corrupt and disastrous. The
main problem at the moment in the painting is that you cannot
Gallery Chapter Three:
"Reclaiming the Sky" - This painting from 2004 had
its beginning and middle life as a companion to House of Memory,
which was painted right before it. The house was brimming with
life stories, and it was about to burst with them. When I started
"Reclaiming the Sky," it stalled as I painted and
repainted the sky. Layer after layer of acrylic went onto the
canvas. What was this painting trying to tell me? Finally, I
took a sharp knife and started to dig into the sky. Five figures
the vessels of memory. My brothers and sister are
with me, reclaiming the sky. The painting was complete.
Gallery Chapter Four:
"Family of Six, Dispersed" - This painting may be
more simple to read, because it is my response to the tragic
and frequently unnecessary consequences of Hurricane Katrina.
It is a result of reading about and viewing some of the painful
ways families survived the storm. Ironically, the way in which
the family members are depicted is reminiscent of those shown
in "Heading Home," a 2003 (Gallery Chapter Three).
Are there any Gallery Chapter paintings that you would like
to know more about? You can contact me at email@example.com.
Next month's journal will focus on two articles that appeared
in the April issue of ARTnews, which had "Painting: Are
the Rules Changing?" as its theme.