a day off / by Philip Tarlow

4:21 PM : today is the first day following my cataract surgery yesterday. my first impression, when i opened my eyes & took off the eye shield I have to wear when I’m sleeping for the next week, was just how white, even bleached, everything looked! none of my glasses worked any more. the progressive lenses i’ve been using didn’t work close in or at a distance, plus i realized they were slightly tinted. so while wearing them nothing was dead white. the reading glasses i had ordered a few prespriptions ago worked only up to about a foot. fine for reading but not useful for computer work or working on a painting.

you have to wait at least a month, more like 2 months for your eyes to settle in so you can get a prescription that will last. so what do you do for those 2 months? i think i’ll wait for our next trip in a week and try out various strengths of inexpensive reading glasses at costco. then i can get a new prescription sometime in mid to late septmember. i’m writing this with some really ancient (and expensive) alain mikli prescription reading glasses i found stashed in a drawer. but they only work up to about a foot away, so it’s that 1-3 feet where the gap is, and that’d the distance that’s so important when i’m in the studio. so i’ll just have to get by for the next few months.

DETAIL figures at the acropolis, oil on linen, 2006

this is an opportunity to look back, which i do on this blog periodically. here are a few images. the one on the right is from a painting included in my 2010 solo show at skoufa gallery in kolonaki square, athens. it’s based on years of living and painting in athens. we were visiting the kids and went to pnika, one of my favorite places in athens, just opposite the acropolis and moments from where my studio was located during that period.

BELOW: (upper left, upper right, etc)

collage on canvas, about 2014, from my ano kato series, creek paintings in gouache on rice paper, plein air inoil on linen, 2011, one of my gaze series painting, now in my son dimitri’s theatre in athens, egg photographing hockney’s pool, egg tempera on board, 1980 (in hockney’s collection) me with construction workers in my athens studio, 1975, private coll., athens, phoning home, egg tempera on board, 1978.