The Beginning





Every painting must start at something. A feel for for St. John's Newfoundland and five photographs. A cool gray rain fogged day, unlike the colourful CBC television serial, The Republic of Doyle. I imagined myself in it on the sun soaked hills around the harbour with a Julian easel.

A year and a half or two later:

I think of children drawing. They do not "see" place from one point of view. They perceive the inside outside timeless moment. A native naive innocent vision.

The drawing of five and six year old children is like the graphics of Japan for Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cezzane or, the art of equatorial Africa for Picasso and Braque. Except that, and this is important; children and I share the same culture. They are young and inexperienced. I am old and studied.

The inside and the outside of the Yellow Beuy (brewery & public house) on Ducksworth between Halloway and Prescott at the same time is not a good title.


Outside on Ducksworth it was ducky wet dim and cool. Yellow stood out duckling bold on grey. Inside the Yellow Beuy, Joseph, it was warm and dark with harsh grey light through windows into soft incandescent yellow shade illumination off electric chandeliers.



The atmospheric differences between the misted outside distance and the sharp inside intimacy interests me. Its a challenge I appreciate and I am looking forward to it. The photographic array doesn't do the moment. It doesn't contain the beer made and drank there, a nice meal. Shelter from the drooling rain leaked through framed stone alter foundation across tiled floor and down brass grated rain drain.

Back to the Atlantic.

Pissing rain, through a weeping foundation.


Paintings have their limitations too but, unlike digital photographs viewed on a screen; paintings have their own distinct physicality of visual and tactile textures.

The concrete beginnings of the painting not of the concept (a painterly repossession of conceptualization); is paint. Hard edged, textured, invented, and rolled; rolling semi-automatic upon canvas... a layered tinted gesso.

In this beginning there is tinted gesso.


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