Ultimately, we all end up in a 100 square foot room

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….

Writing in my Head….

Gradually, since I primarily write these entries for my self anyway, I hope to get down some thoughts about the last two months, and also the years coming up.
Nothing like helping a 90-year old person through some serious hurdles to get you envisioning yourself in the next decade or so.
Let’s just say I am relieved to be back in the studio again, getting reacquainted with what I left on the wall. It used to worry me if I spent time away from work that was moving along, but now I rather value the perspective of distance I get, and how it makes me see things more objectively – hence the two formerly thought-to-be-completed paintings I took back in and am now re-working a bit. It usually comes down to a balance between what is and is not visible, the relative scale of elements….
going to be around for First Friday as an experiment. The building where my studio is located also houses a small arts center which is referred to as a museum. They now charge people 8 bucks to walk through, so I am imagining it puts quite a damper on casual traffic. I happen to believe it’s a wrong-headed move in a city as small as this, but I’m just a tenant…..