Saturday, April 3, 2010

Painted Soul

I have long been drawn to the shape of the circle, as many of you have figured out. I recently was watching some ghost hunting stories (I know) and they had a medium on there (I know, I know) and she said something I long suspected about my usage of the circle, that an orb is the purest form/representation of the soul, and that's maybe why they show up on photographs as that shape. Circles, in effect, being the purest form of the soul was a very powerful idea, even it came from a suspect source.

I have tried over the years to figure out the use of this imagery, and what it means. I think I always get close, but maybe it's a very indefinable thing, constantly changing and mutating in my head. I know I got close when I thought it was 'a body' and I got even closer, or more all-encompassing with the series statement for Continuum. By the by, this circle series may go down in history as being the largest one ever, since the 365.series is included in it, as well (I wrote the statement about circles at that point). Maybe one day I will get an accurate count, but I've done these in all sizes (except for 'gigantor') and I've been at it for quite awhile. They are coming out of my ears.

I think I can pinpoint the start of this obsession during my many watercolor classes with Anne Miotke. I used the tiny, left-over, scraps, and mindlessly painted while watching tv. I liked getting in touch with my medium and feeling what it could do....I like to enjoy myself. I want to say that I started the circles in 2001-2002ish...! Have I really been doing this (lack of) subject matter for ten years now? (This is just like my two-year, non-stop taco fetish, only bigger and way longer)

There is an evolution to these circles, don't get me wrong. The pieces at the beginning were downright tiny, pure painting, and the circles had a tendency to be distanced from their background. Now I use printmaking techniques in conjunction with everything else I can throw at them, and the circles tend to meld a bit more with their surroundings. Is this a metaphor for how I have come to see humanity? Or my own soul, not as distanced as it once was?

I have always liked doing these in my down-time, they are zen. If I can't think of anything, or if I don't want to think of anything...currently, I'm nervous about moving across country. The freedom of movement I had been feeling a month ago is turning to nerves, so the bird series isn't really working for me presently. And I can't put this nervousness into words and pictures just yet...

So in the meantime, I guess I paint souls...





These are approximately 5.5 by 6.5 inches. The titles of the four pieces are reflective of carts, or wheelbarrows....I have been thinking about the idea of 'death carts' lately. Maybe these are my version, 'soul carts'. Possibly, I will do some figurative pieces on the subject later.


Laura said...

I love the colors you used in this set of paintings! I also like all the meaning behind your circles (what a powerful shape). The first one definitely seems the most soul-like.

shana goetsch said...

thanks! the meanings always seems to change or alter, at least.
hey laura, i made a blog post about you on my other blog. Hope you don't mind: