changes to icy creek II / by Philip Tarlow

icy creek II 32x38”, after extensive work today

3:04 PM: i painted over yesterdays version of icy creek II and started over this morning. i have a phone call right now, so i’ll resume once i’m done with the call. in the mean time and to remind you, here’s yesterdays version.

my problem with yesterdays version, you may recall, was that it just didn’t hang together. some beautiful passages, but no real coherence overall, as a composition or, more importantly, as a vision. as time goes on, my experiences sitting at the creek and painting plein air have distilled down to the symphony of forms & colors you see above. as matisse showed us over & over, what matters is not the abolition of reality in favor of abstraction, but the conversion of reality into abstraction. this need arises, in part i believe, from gazing over and over at that particular segment of the natural world that attracts us until, at some moment, a light goes off and we know that we are not just looking at rocks, water & branches; rather we are looking at the dance of energy in material form.