parade 16: as an archaeological artifact, an old billboard / by Philip Tarlow

this morning i brought back parade 16, which i revisited yesterday (scroll down to yesterday's post). it still wasn't working. bits i had collaged on were bubbling up. brush stokes i had added were bugging me. so i began by lifting and tearing off any collaged bits that hadn't adhered properly. tear marks reminiscent of old billboards appeared. i remembered a trip to paris, standing on the metro platform and waiting for the train. opposite was such a billboard. only in paris could such a torn, partially scraped and removed billboard look so much like a work of art. it was flat out gorgeous. i photographed it, and made a mental note to revisit this kurt schwitter-esque aesthetic.

this morning, feeling like my attempt to revitalize and reinvent parade 16 had failed miserably, i remembered that billboard and how aesthetically satisfying it was. and, as i lifted and tore away bits of collaged paper and old oil palettes, i experienced that same aesthetic satisfaction as bits of newsprint were revealed alongside remnants of the original painting, with it's figures seen from above.

and those figures gained status as newly discovered artifacts. while they were not revealed during a greek archeological dig, they are nonetheless survivors of the passage of time, albeit measured in hours rather than eons.

what does this mean for future parade paintings? for the larger versions i'm about to begin? once again, i am reminded that a painting is not the subject. it is a process.