Eye candy

In the eye of ire, 12"x9", acrylic on Strathmore 400-series, 60-lb Sketch paper

Liquitex man, 12"x9", acrylic on Canson 140-lb cold press watercolor pad

Back in the Philippines during the good old days when I was so into reading art history, the images that impressed me the most were the abstract or expressionist ones with bright or contrasting colors! I remember reading The World Book Encyclopedia‘s article on “Painting,” and three works stoked my imagination in feverish delight: first was Jackson Pollock’s One (Number 31, 1950) ; second was Willem de Kooning’s Woman, I; and third was Wassily Kandinsky’s Little Pleasures, No. 174. Sure there were equally staggeringly colorful works by van Gogh, Picasso, Matisse, Chagall, Hoffman, Rouault, Gorky, etc.! But the abstract/expressionist paintings of Pollock, de Kooning and Kandinsky blew me away the most! When I came here to the U.S. and got the chance to see their actual works, the effect was even more awe-inspiring! Standing, at times, very close to the paintings and staring admiringly at each work (and mind you, these works are huge! Pollock’s alone occupy a wall!), I must admit I was tempted to touch them just to trace the artists’ drips of paints and brushstrokes! I was just scared the security people who were all around would throw me out of the museum! Ha ha! But, my God, the experience was just beyond words! (I felt the same experience when my sister and I went to see Vincent van Gogh’s The Drawings exhibit at The Met in 2005!) I saw Pollock’s and de Kooning’s at the MoMA, and Kandinsky’s at the Guggenheim.
So everytime I have brightly colored paints before me, I’m compelled to just have a go at them! Almost always, the results are monstrous! But man, am I happy!


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