Sunday, September 28, 2014

On Pleasure

Pleasure is a freedom-song, But it is not freedom.
It is the blossoming of your desires,
But it is not their fruit.
It is a depth calling unto a height, But it is not the deep nor the high. It is the caged taking wing,
But it is not space encompassed.
Ay, in very truth, pleasure is a freedomsong.
And I fain would have you sing it with fullness of heart; yet I would not have you lose your hearts in the singing.

Some of your youth seek pleasure as if it were all, and they are judged and rebuked.
I would not judge nor rebuke them. I would have them seek.
For they shall find pleasure, but not her alone;
Seven are her sisters, and the least of them is more beautiful than pleasure.
Have you not heard of the man who was digging in the earth for roots and found a treasure?

And some of your elders remember pleasures with regret like wrongs committed in drunkenness.
But regret is the beclouding of the mind and not its chastisement.
They should remember their pleasures with gratitude, as they would the harvest of a summer.
Yet if it comforts them to regret, let them be comforted.

And there are among you those who are neither young to seek nor old to remember;
And in their fear of seeking and remembering they shun all pleasures, lest they neglect the spirit or offend against it.
But even in their foregoing is their pleasure.
And thus they too find a treasure though they dig for roots with quivering hands.
But tell me, who is he that can offend the spirit?
Shall the nightingale offend the stillness of the night, or the firefly the stars?
And shall your flame or your smoke burden the wind?
Think you the spirit is a still pool which you can trouble with a staff?

Oftentimes in denying yourself pleasure you do but store the desire in the recesses of your being.
Who knows but that which seems omitted today, waits for tomorrow?
Even your body knows its heritage and its rightful need and will not be deceived.
And your body is the harp of your soul,
And it is yours to bring forth sweet music from it or confused sounds.

And now you ask in your heart, "How shall we distinguish that which is good in pleasure from that which is not good?"
Go to your fields and your gardens, and you shall learn that it is the pleasure of the bee to gather honey of the flower,
But it is also the pleasure of the flower to yield its honey to the bee.
For to the bee a flower is a fountain of life,
And to the flower a bee is a messenger of love,
And to both, bee and flower, the giving and the receiving of pleasure is a need and an ecstasy.

- Kahlil Gibran

Thursday, September 25, 2014

KwangHo Shin

KwangHo Shin
Creation Under Collapse
September 11 - October 16, 2014
UNIX Gallery
532 West 24th Street
New York,NY 10011

Monday, September 15, 2014

Táctica y estrategia

Mi táctica es
aprender como sos
quererte como sos

mi táctica es
y escucharte
construir con palabras
un puente indestructible

mi táctica es
quedarme en tu recuerdo
no sé cómo ni sé
con qué pretexto
pero quedarme en vos

mi táctica es
ser franco
y saber que sos franca
y que no nos vendamos
para que entre los dos
no haya telón
ni abismos

mi estrategia es
en cambio
más profunda y más

mi estrategia es
que un día cualquiera
no sé cómo ni sé
con qué pretexto
por fin me necesites.

                                                                                                                                        - Mario Benedetti

Instructors Exhibition at The Art Students League of New York

September 2 to October 9, 2014
215 West 57th Street
New York, NY 10019

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Around the World Creative Blog Hop

Many thanks to the extraordinarily gifted sculptor Midori Tataki for nominating me for the Around the World Creative Blog Hop, wherein artists answer questions about their creative endeavors and invite others to participate.

It's always fun to do a bit of self-examination so here's my entry:

What am I working on?

We're currently on break at the National Academy of Design, where I study painting with Dan Gheno, and so I've been dropping in at Spring Studio in Soho NYC to sketch live models.

My recent drawings are all short poses lasting about 10 to 20 minutes. Rather than doing the full figure I've been focusing on portraits and sections of the torso to study the abstract patterns that occur naturally in the human form.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I was trained in classical realism but over the past few years transitioned into figurative expressionism.

To paraphrase Lucian Freud, my object in painting is to move the senses by giving an intensification of reality. My art explores the fragmentary nature of perception, the selectivity of memory, and the heightened awareness that exists between the artist and subject.

In my paintings I aim for visual tension through opposing colors and brushstrokes. I often introduce an element of discordance, perhaps something that doesn't seem quite right, in order to startle the eye and encourage it to keep looking.

I follow many artists who combine realism and abstraction. I like to think of my own work as a part of this zeitgeist.

My pieces, however, differ from others in that I prefer live models over photographs. I believe that it is important to be in the same room with the model in order to accurately express his or her personality and energy on the canvas.

Why do I create what I do?

As a child I liked to sketch but it was only after seeing the movie Pollock that I decided to attend art school.

Drawing from life is intensely addictive. The focused, non-verbal exploration sometimes fosters a psychological attachment that is similar to transference. Indeed, I have become good friends with many models and have come to appreciate their feedback and points of view.

I believe that portraiture is an essential tradition that enables us to recognize the dignity all humanity. It has been my privilege to continue this practice.

How does my creative process work?

I have documented my creative process with Freddy, Lex, and Christophe.

I start with a realistic drawing then develop it in an expressionistic manner. If a painting takes more than one session, I photograph it and alter the image digitally to explore possible directions.

With these recent studies I've been trying to develop the fragmented, glitched qualities at the very beginning, rather than superimposing them later on in my process.

And now... with great pleasure I hereby nominate the following artists for this blog hop:

Martin Olsson - color field minimalist, based in the UK,

Daniil Belov - plein air landscape artist, based in Russia, and

Troy Stith - sculptor and painter, based in Ohio.

Please click on their links and enjoy their inspiring works. And thanks to all of you for visiting my blog!

Friday, September 5, 2014


Here are a couple of photos pf my painting Aria on a collector's wall. I've never thought of my art as decorative, at least not in in the conventional sense of the word, but I think it looks good in this interior.

The collector encouraged me to continue with larger scale paintings which I haven't done in over a year. Art class resumes next Saturday and so I'm looking forward to working on a big canvas again.



Here are two smaller paintings in the collector's bedroom: