A Perfect Green Ribbon

Once, when I was young and stoned, I painted a perfect ribbon. It was green satin and, when I’d finished, it really looked like green satin. Pure accident. The paint was thick and ugly, phthalo green, so I ran my thumb along it to take off the excess and wiped it on a towel. Now, anyone who knows phthalo green, will know it’s transparent. When I looked again, the paper below the paint was showing through and there was an amazing ribbon with light playing on the satin. The rest of the painting was shit, but never mind. Interesting how you learn things. And interesting how accidents can give you a result. I got so fond of accidents, chance mistakes, that I spent a lot of time seeking them out. I really dislike slick paintings and began painting with lumpy paint and bits of stick. (Hence the poem called how to paint a painting in the blog post below.) I would paint in negative, white on black, because it gave a fresh feel.

self portrait with hand in lap  acrylic and kaolin on canvas
self portrait with hand in lap
acrylic and kaolin on canvas

What do we seek in pursuing art? What I most desire is those times when I’m completely engrossed in the work, so far in that time, pain and mind disappear, so far in that when the happy accident happens, it feels like I’m being acted upon, like the hand of … God, or something.

A Bird in the Hand  (acrylic and sand on canvas)
a bird in the hand
(acrylic and sand on canvas)


6 thoughts on “A Perfect Green Ribbon

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