October 31, 2019

All Hallows’ Eve

‘Wasn’t something supposed to happen today?’ 7.30 pm: Breakfast time:

8.25 am: Off to town, by way of a supermarket, towards the School. 9.10 am: The first of the day’s two Abstraction lectures. We went to the Armoury Show (1913). Who wrote this?:

This is the last time that I’ll be delivering the module at the School. 10.15 am: The start of a long day of third year painting tutorials. I think ‘pooch’ likes me:

A desultory day. I felt it in my bones:

1.00 pm: Abstraction, again. Into the realms of Pollock, Jung, and Native-American Indian sand-painting. 2.00 pm: A hurried lunch over adminy bits, before engaging my afternoon’s roster of tutorials. This would be a slog. 5.30 pm: An end:

Some principles and observations derived from today’s engagements:

  • You paint yourself into a problem and out again; that’s how it works.
  • S: ‘I really enjoyed making it!’. T: ‘Irrelevant! What did you achieve?’
  • T: ‘IDEA: Ephemeral paintings made from toothpaste and face moisturiser.’
  • T: ‘Who shops in Tesco Express at 3.00 am?’ S: ‘Drunken students, mostly.’
  • In the end, it all comes down to identity and motivation. The rest, it seems, arises out of these things.
  • T: ‘Now, you do the talking.’
  • T: ‘How would increasing the scale change the nature of the subject of representation? Don’t overlook the virtues of the small painting .’
  • A photograph is the closest technological equivalent to a memory; and, yet it looks nothing like a memory.
  • Today, we take too many photographs; the sheer availability and ease of production seems somehow to invalidate each one, to some measure.
  • Grind your graphic medium into a powder, and apply it as though it was dry paint.
  • It’s when you cease caring about whether a painting is going to work that the breakthrough often takes place.
  • There comes a point where you must stop listening to the opinions of others and trust your own judgement and integrity. This is the essence of artistic maturity.
  • You need paint only one ‘sentence’ in order to discern the language.
  • This is a time for problem setting, not problem solving.
  • Don’t judge the outcome on the basis of an anticipation. Do it, and then make the call.

7.30 pm: An important letter was sent. Besides that, I completed uploads of material for students to review, and planned next week’s teaching timetable. Welcome to Thursday evening (again).

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October 30, 2019
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