continued work on grey 10 / looking back: 1978 / by Philip Tarlow

12:30 PM: as promised, i scrobbled, scraped and re-worked the entire surface of grey 10, 38x38." true to the series title, it has indeed greyed out, and in the process gained some of the mystery characteristic of the entire series. the fact that much of the work on this painting was done with the canvas lying flat on a table accounts for some of the distortion in the face, when compared with the original. vermeer's face is long and narrow; this one is wide and rounded. 

10:45 AM: about to get back to work on grey 10.

four 12x6" paintings of a greek fisherman on the island of andros telling the story of how about 100 people, including his family, were saved from a fire in a movie theatre in asia minor by the intervention of the divine mother. painted in 1978 in oil on linen, this painting is in our collection.

i made a number of variations on these paintings, one of which is in the estate of henry geldzahler, former curator of 20th c. art at the met in nyc. they are all based on b&w photos i had the presence of mind, to shoot as nikos the fisherman told the story in a very animated way. it was the very first movie theatre in smyrna, built of wood. a few minutes into the show, the projector broke. the theatre owner asked everyone to leave, as it was going to take time to repair. minutes after the last person exited the theatre, it burst into flames and burnt to the ground. the greek theatre attendees considered this a miracle; an intervention by despina, or the virgin. thus, the painting's title, the miracle.