Saturday, January 7, 2012
Acrylic on Natural Clay. 5" high x 7.5" wide x 3" deep.
This month's piece was inspired by a recent trip to the Willem de Kooning retrospective at MoMA. At a friend's small foundry, de Kooning produced some small bronzes for the first time in his life when he must have been - if I remember correctly - well in his 60s. Prior to this visit, I had really only been familiar with his "Woman" oils, which I did not like particularly. There is a sensitive brutality in his sculptures; they are "painted" with a finely tuned, but general, "wide brushstroke" that appeals to me very much. I feel a breathing body's forces, its struggles, its beauty and ugliness, its will to live in de Kooning's sculptural shapes. His sculpture has helped me view his paintings in a new light.
For some reason I envision "Deciding Factor" in a bookcase. It is pictured in ours, next to a clay bear by my grandmother and below watercolors by my two-and-a-half-year-old son. I swear it is pure coincidence that a de Kooning book is on that shelf!