This post arrived in my inbox today by the inspirational Canadian artist, Robert Genn. It inspired this blog entry. Even if you are not a painter, I think you will enjoy reading, as he weaves life’s lessons into each post.
“What are you doing?” a voice asks from behind me in clear, almost musical English. Turning around I find a saffron-robed monk. He is a round little man with a round, shaven head, flatter than it is deep–a face like a bas-relief. He is smiling, friendly.“I’m trying to paint an elephant,” I say. He moves closer. “But are you painting the power of the elephant, or the patience of the elephant, or the spirit of the elephant?” he asks.
READ MORE: clicks.robertgenn.com/memory-thailand.php
I paint horses, but mostly I paint their essence. This painting is about fluidity & grace. Have you ever moved your hand quickly back & forth in front of your face? When you do, you don’t see your hand; instead you see the background- what is behind your hand. The color passages, (from the powerful violets directly behind the horse’s body to the attention grabbing roses where the next footfall will land to the lyrical yellows trailing behind this horse) manifest all the beauty & joy a horse expresses through movement. The heavy and lighter blue lines indicate a powerful mass moving through space; yet this 1000 pound animal appears weightless. The ground line is dynamic, changing from thin blue to heavy red at the last point of thrust. I never tire of observing and painting horses; they range from gentle giants, wise teachers, dancers beyond the tether of gravity, to powerful primeval forces, depending on their needs on emotions. All this can be conveyed through distilling their elements into an interplay of shadow & shape, line & color, rhythm & texture….whatever the painting calls for…..
In the series of paintings I call the “Christmas Horses, “there is very little paint strategically placed to tell the story of Christmas magic. Instead of adding all the details you’d find in a Christmas card, I prefer to let the viewers create their own narratives.