Archive for June, 2015
It may be impossible to reverse engineer the thoughts and feelings that come about while creating. But for this one, it suddenly came before me, or more accurately, behind my eyes on that slate that passes continuously in the mind. It was there, and it intrigued me. It kept returning, as I thought up materials and methods so that I might replicate what I saw in my imagination.
Why this particular image imprinted on my imagination is another conundrum, and one attempts to unravel it. I had stitched closed a gash in my elbow once with button thread and a curved needle. I also had been going through the usual psychological wounds of living life, especially significant at times, though one attempts to brush those very real energies aside. Or maybe it was that I had only recently had my left knee replaced, and soon would have the right knee joint also replaced – all in the space of six months. The scar on my left knee was a river pattern. Maybe those impressions could shine a light on why this image metaphored into my mind? Whatever, wherever it came from, I ‘owned’ it now, and I could choose to bring it to a tangible shape.
I wanted to work with aluminum for its malliability and shine. For a while, I was going to simply paint the ‘flesh’ beneath red on some material, but finally chose peened and raised copper. I found the same curved needle I had used to suture my earlier wound. I learned the proper suturing knot. Then began the tests, the failures, the melding of expectations with what materials and reality finally allows to move into form. All mounted on wood panel. A viewer at the gallery show purchased it the first day it was hung on the wall…a validation of sorts. Of feelings that may be universally felt; of images that symbolize…something to me, and maybe also to someone else.
Wound. Aluminum, copper, mixed media on panel. 24″ x 12″.
image copyright © Ken Smith 2015 all rights reserved.