This is the latest work in progress. It is a big one and it took some planning. Small things become glaring at 24×36 inches and I changed the composition and the canvas twice. I think I am finally happy. Now the visible progress begins.
Details in a ruined house are a part of the composition, not incidentals to me. Peeling wallpaper, cracking paint, rotting floors – all these elements of slow decay are the painting. This one goes a bit further, incorporating the view of the abandoned farm. It will be a challenge to keep the details at the right concentration. So we will see how it goes…
I admit that it has been slow going. I have been torn away by all of the events and the news surrounding Japan. The shock of the utter devastation is not yet worn off. Events will continue to unfold for the people of Japan for many weeks to come before the rebuilding, emotionally and physically, begins; a reconstruction that will likely take years, even decades. I am overwhelmed and moved by the calm of the people amidst the incomprehensible suffering they are experiencing.
Nature always returns to claim her own. Sometimes it is with a slow absorption and an almost elegant creativity, other times it is abrupt and destructive. The cycles of Nature are reflected in many cultures and in the case of the 2004 tsunami, Kali comes to mind. In Japanese Shinto (The Way of the Gods), Susano-ô, a god of storms and destruction seems to be the deity that has raised his domain, Yomi-tsu Kuni (Land of Darkness), on the north-eastern coast of Japan.
In time, all our tears are absorbed into the ocean, our bones into the rocks and soil. I grieve with the Japanese people and look forward to when the sun smiles and when the flowers grow again.
My love and thoughts are with you all and in particular my friend living in Tokyo, Alexander. You are strong and courageous, my friend…
Happy 95th birthday to my Grandmother and Happy St. Patrick’s Day to everyone.