I’m thinking about lots of things not directly related to painting these days. Most notably, my 90 year old mother who has been in a “health care center” -(when did this euphemism for nursing home appear?) for several months. At first, it was just to get stronger, so she might return home, or to assisted living. Then she got over confident and had a fall (fractured hip) then she had surgery and came back weaker, and now has some pain which prevents her from getting any physical therapy, hence, getting weaker still.
So, between her situation, and the many like it that I have witnessed as a hospice volunteer, I am keenly aware that despite all we acquire and seem to inhabit in our prime, there’s a good chance most of us will come to reside in a much smaller universe during the final chapters of our lives.
In some ways, this is a relief – downsizing- getting rid of things extraneous- from relationships to belongings to expectations and self-judgments.
It just so happens that my studio is about this size, and I feel that I am about to undergo some sort of transition there as well.
Perhaps it will be from painting to drawing as a primary activity. . . perhaps I’ll haul in my small (but extremely heavy) etching press. Making work again that can indeed be stored flat or easily ripped up.
The universe and its walls can only absorb so many paintings and other two-dimensional visual work, and let’s face it- this seems to be a time when everyone and their aunt thinks that after taking a couple workshops, they are ready to quit their day job and be a “professional artist.”
So, quantity has mushroomed, quality has suffered, the market is glutted and, yes, marketing becomes the name of the game. As I was telling a friend today, there now seems to be a whole entire insidious “profession” of art marketing coaches, making lots of money off of these same recently hatched “artists”.
But, here’s the truth as I lived it getting my training as a painter….I don’t think I was compelled to be a painter because I wanted to go into marketing and sales. If that was the case, I would have gone straight to business school. Do no pass GO.
More as this fork in the road develops….