Friday, 6 May 2016

Seated Woman

The face lost to the distance.

This hand. It is a palm! a tropical growth on a craggy dress; its planes of slate; its rocky mountainside. The leaves like sausage dogs, sniffing around the cheek and lip.

Her thoughts a hot air balloon.

The gas jet firing above, we do not hear the painter’s words: “move your head to…to…yes, to the side; and look up; yes…yes, and…up, up, up just a little more, look up towards that window. Wonderful! Now let the leg drop easily. And think of something beautiful; think of a Raphael; think of Botticelli, of the Primavera. Marvellous! Now create a painting in your mind. Draw it slowly, and very carefully; the window, do you see it? is becoming a frame, and inside there is a door; it opens slowly; and you are watching this door, you watch it opening onto God’s grace, the light of reverie, that carries you away, that takes you… That’s it! Fantastic! Keep it there. And… In your hand you are holding a cup, the hot tea seeping through the porcelain, warming your fingers, relaxing them; giving you a warm glow. That’s it. Yes, you are a picture! The brushes will describe you well. They will; oh yes, yes…they are!”

The woman does not see us: we are too far from the horizon on which her eyes rest.

A balance exists in this painting. The arms and legs suggest it. The limbs are an axle, holding in equilibrium lightness and heaviness, a body against the mind.

A flyweight dances around a middleweight, whose punches land in air.

Clothed in a jumble of grey the body is losing shape, is twisted up, is bursting out into different directions; one leg thrust forward in energetic display, its foot dancing to its own rhythm, the other seeks the solace of ground… A pink plastic pitchfork is squashed against the hard earth. The hand we have already mentioned; it will be mentioned again.

We think of a classroom after the teacher has left the room.

Thought inflates the limbs; a hand floating around a head whose inhabitants have flown to another country.

The absent mind grounds this body, which is anchored by a rope of hair.

A mind drifting into the distance. And images explode like fireworks, one dropping slowly down filling the black canvas: we see a plane, it is on auto-pilot; the captain dreaming of Don Quixote chasing his Dulcinea, the clouds galloping on ahead.

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