Anxiety bananas

Work in progress

Right now (I’m writing this on Tuesday 24 September) I’m enjoying some post planning glow where I feel everything is under control. Of course, there’s still a sh•t tonne of work to be done for my exhibition in February – blurb to be written, poster designs, beer sponsorship and more – but for the moment it all seems possible, on paper at least, so I’m going to enjoy the calm.

This is a welcome change as I’ve been feeling quite anxious about it all.1 In particular I’ve been struggling with the painting. I’m wrestling with the content, if that’s the right word. I have a strong aversion to narrative and am struggling with my tendency to perceive paintings as objects rather than windows into another world or even as images. This affects how I relate to the work.

I can of course, look at it formally – is it feeling balanced, does it need this colour or that shape, does the work feel coherent? Thinking about composition I have to be careful not to slide into thinking about “image” as this trips me up. Perhaps I need to tweak my understanding of image or live with being uncomfortable with the work for a while just to see what happens.

That said, the paintings I’m happy with have a coherence, an internal integrity. It’s this integrity I’m looking for in the pieces I’m struggling with, which means I will need to keep pushing and changing them until they lock into place.

Not necessarily unrelated:

Stay loose. Let go. There are other bananas.

From a blog post by Frank Chimero.

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