1.21.2012

brilliant projects heretofore unpublished: not myself portrait


 (untitled)
Sharpie marker + pencil + acrylic on canvas
48" x 60"
2000

A lifetime ago (I love saying that), a longterm relationship fell apart in the most brutal of ways. I can't talk about it anymore, it's so irrelevant to my life now, and this is a mostly good times blog! But, the split and how it happened and how I suffered defined me for years. That's no good. As I've mentioned in some previous posts, it was the best thing that ever happened to me, in the long run. And it left me with the knowledge that "I've been through stuff like this before, I can handle it", which helps when times get tough in the real world.

This piece was something I worked on right after the storm that was the end of that relationship hit. I can't believe I was able to be conscious enough to do this. It's a little "out-of-body-experience-meets-PTSD", or something like that, when I try to remember what it was like working on it.

I never have been able to draw or paint faces. I wish I could. What a gift that is. So, the omission of my head was not meaningful at first, it was just as far as I could get successfully with my self portrait. I've always said that my botanical work and this piece are so very similar. They are true to scale, and they are repetitive. A brilliant analogy I arrived at when being interviewed about this work (a lifetime ago).

Closer view.

The text repeats, over and over, "He didn't love me enough". 

Only one time, scribbling this over and over, did I make a mistake. Somewhere in the top right hand corner I wrote "He didn't want me enough". That mistake bothered the perfectionist in me a lot, until one day at an open studio event my former flamenco instructor Yaelisa pointed out to me the idea of the "deliberate mistake", purportedly used in the quilt and rug making of some cultures. Myth or no myth, that was good enough for me to let that one go.  

My mistake resides somewhere up in that white circle.

This piece was hanging in the bedroom for a long time after I met David, got married, and had Stella. After I met David, none of this really mattered anymore, and I never looked at it again as a painful memory, just as a reminder of a time where I had the time to work on a piece like this, and how I am capable of doing the work I want to do. I took it down when Stella was around three years old. No need for her to be wondering about all this business, yet.



18 comments:

  1. It can be very healing to work on piece like that. It is beautiful. I think the little imperfection makes it "perfect".

    happiness...
    dannelle@nestenterprises

    (What an inspiring and creative post you did at ohdeardrea.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for taking the time to say such nice things, Dannelle. I will stop by your blog soon to see what you're up to!

      Delete
  2. You are definitely a when-life-gives-you-lemons-make-lemon-aid kind of person! Amazing piece! You are great to be around!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, I try! Thanks Ann, that all means a lot coming from a talented and prolific artist such as yourself!

      Delete
  3. An amazing piece. To just observe what was. What a journey. You are inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Marie! You are so sweet.

      Delete
  4. i remember this piece. it left me speechless when i first saw it, but in a totally good way. i've written stuff during times like that but not to the extent that this piece exuded. it's so nice to see how you've emerged from this brilliantly, and how happy you are now.
    however, i think you forgot to mention another good thing that came out of this point in your life, and that was your blossoming rap career as 'dependable skeleton' in the old school 'oak street click'....we're still beefing with those camino flamencos punks by the way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw, Renato, thank you so much. Things certainly turned around for me, and having you always there with a joke (and a drink!) helped SO much. You're such an action packed mentalist. No, really, you are. Love ya.

      Delete
  5. What a beautiful piece, "mistake" included. Thank you for sharing the story behind it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Dawn. I'm so happy that I've created a place to share it and found people to share it with!

      Delete
  6. What a gorgeous work of art. It's amazing that you could turn that pain so readily into something beautiful. I'm a firm believer in the "intentional mistake". I just love so much about this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your support, S.S. I'm finding I am REALLY happy I shared this here. To have people see it and say such kind things adds another level of validation to the way I was feeling when I created it.

      Delete
  7. It's absolutely beautiful...both the portrait and the story behind it. I understand what you mean by a seemingly bad experience later being the best thing that ever happened to you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sabrina. I hope these is a flip side to every story, and that everyone has a chance to grow from any bad experiences they may have!

      Delete
  8. I love the concept of the writing with the image...I get totally bothered too when I have a mistake that no one else would even know. Even though it might sound trite I'm a firm believer that everything in our life happens for a reason. We wouldn't be who we are without all of our life experiences, good or bad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tania, that doesn't sound trite at all. :)

      Delete
  9. A beautiful image and I love the mistake. I really do. It must have wanted to come out. It needed to be said. After years of being a perfectionist I've since decided that perfection is seriously overrated when one stops to consider the damage the quest can leave in its wake. Charming in it's imperfection is now much more appealing to me than perfection itself.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I agree with everything you just said, Flirty Girl! I am amazed that that was the ONLY mistake the whole time. I must've been super-hyper-focused.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...