November 29, 2019

8.00 am: Colder but with the prospect of a dry day ahead, mercifully:

8.45 am: This would be a bitty day of necessary fragments. Procurement and set-up were on the top of my list. I needed to seal the deal (with the great reluctance) on my Adobe Creative Cloud purchase and download updates to one computer before getting down to the meat of the day. ‘I’m waiting for my [Adobe on-line agent]’, to adapt a Lou Reed line, to respond. Black Friday wouldn’t be the best day for a prompt reply. I shuttled between studio and study clicking mouse buttons, batting-off emails, finalizing dates for the Stephen Chilton exhibition, while playing the waiting game still.

10.30 am: I took up again note taking and research on Steve’s paintings, beginning with his last works. Strangely, it was rather like having a one-way tutorial with him. There were so many questions that I’d like him to address. But, today, he spoke silently, out of the silence. There used to be significant silences between my questions and his answers when we held our tutorials. Now the interval is far, far longer.

1.10 pm: Town manoeuvres, in order to secure a lunchtime haircut (long overdue):

2.00 pm: I continued, moving to another of Stephen’s series. The various portfolios he’d made have a considerable similarities, but discernible differences in intent. On his website, there are textual descriptions of ideas and moods that he wished to evoke through some of the works. I’d cautioned him not to declare too much about the paintings in writing. There was a risk that the image would be regarded as an illustration of the text. Descriptions constrain the pictures in other ways. Ideally, works like Stephen’s should not be ‘about’ anything but, rather, simply be:

Stephen Chilton, Evening Veil (2013), acrylic on canvas

4.30 pm: Evening fell:

5.30 pm: Off to the Arts Centre to attend the a ‘live’ broadcast of Philip Glass’ opera Akhenaton (1983). I’d seen this version at the ENO on March 2, 2019. It’s among those art works that have had the greatest influence on my own creative development.

A one-week diary sabbatical

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November 28, 2019
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December 5, 2019

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