daily painting | talk to me

How the hell to tell when a painting is done? It’s a best-guess kind of game. “A painting is never done,” an artist once said, “you just have to know when to stop.” This is a larger one and it called for various shades of red. Maybe because I’m so angry at the state of things in the country. Who knows? I’m always suspicious of someone’s interpretations of an artist’s motivations when it comes to expression; it is patronizing and insulting, in my mind, to analyze. The best thing is when someone has their own emotional reaction to a painting — the connection to a work of art is the thing. A million years ago in a former lifetime (that’s code for the 1980s) when I returned to the Bay Area after living in rural Oregon I was so thrilled to return to San Francisco museums I stood in front of a Matisse and burst into tears, she was so beautiful (“The Girl with Green Eyes”). Always good to feel. To express grief. To cry and wail and let storms move through you. You won’t crumple, really. You’ll recover and feel better for letting go. That’s my motto, anyway. You should see how many boxes of Kleenex are on call around my house, at the ready.

41″ x 43″ acrylic, oil pastel, pencil on unstretched canvas = $2290