I only do one drawing a month for distillation, intensity. The process is improvisation until there is an 'object quality' and it resonates with my experience, transformed into stillness. (quotes from artist David Ainley)
To Whom It May Concern
In Plato’s ‘Meno’ Socrates draws. But did he? The footnote reads:- ‘Socrates draws a square’ and also adds a diagram. But the text by Plato reads:- ‘tell me now…you know that a square figure is like this?’ the slave replies:- ‘I do’.
Perhaps Socrates did not draw. Perhaps Socrates and the slave imagined the lines. After all, ‘Meno’ is a Socratic dialogue.
Plato goes on to write that Socrates and the slave imagine dividing up the imaginary lines into sections with ensuing logical geometric conclusions. The time was the start of Euclid’s geometry- the drawing of lines, dividing them up, counting, maths and 2-D (not multi-D) geometry.
Titles of Art= ‘tell me now…you know that…is like this?’
‘Homage to the Square’ by Albers, German, modernist, Bauhaus colour painter. He painted many paintings with this title. The viewer is supposed to be in homage to the square, to geometry, to a way of thinking about lines though the colours do nicely muffle the title. That’s the benefit of colour.
Also in ‘Meno’ Socrates refers to Daedalus’ statues. Evidently they were so beautifully lively they needed tying down or they escaped like runaway free thinking out of control slaves. Titles are the way of tying art down so it can be carried into the art world, but at a loss of liveliness.
Helene Cixous wrote ‘Stigmata, escaping texts’. She writes around major historical paintings, freeing them for a 21st Century viewer.
My drawings are entitled:- ‘scores for musicians’. I hope to regain their original liveliness- that moment of improvisation before they began accruing particular meanings.
The philosopher must go further than the scientist. Making a clean sweep of everything that is only an imaginative symbol, she will see the material world melt back into a simple flux, a continuity of flowing,a becoming. And she will thus be prepared to discover real duration there where it is still more useful to find it, in the realm of life and of consciousness.' ('Creative Evolution', Bergson)
The drawings are made monthly. Canvas panels 20 x 20 cm, paint, ink, pencil, improvised.
Cixous (Stigmata): drawing 'the living of life'; its exactly what none knows how to draw, the quick of life...against the idea...I want the nerve...because our soul has no firm footing...we want to draw the instant...we are advancing backwards...truth gives us pleasure...opens our heart.