Posted in Paintings in Progress

Higgily-Piggily Mindscape-an artwork in progress

jerusalem painting 2 cropped Here is a small study for a larger piece.  I’m wanting to keep it lean, avoid accumulation of extraneous detail and focus on atmosphere, light and a general feeling of spaciousness.  This one seems to suggest loss.

Shadowy forms step forward from the mists with a single swipe of the paint rag.  They appear in my dreams silhouetted against ancient fires, as if to demand I attend to their their melancholy plight wandering the in-between.

The memory practice is working.  I went from recalling no dreams at all, to writing 5 pages this morning. These seem to have associations with the art project, “real” life, and offer encounters with Asiatic shamans in crazy hats who get on my case for some vague act of forgetfulness.

The intent to work with the spontaneous flow of dream imagery-the attempt to bring unconscious content into the light of day-involves a confrontation with subject/object paradox.    Who is doing the observing?  Who is observed?  Looking inward brings up thorny issues about perception and reality that artists have been struggling with since Cezanne, and which mystics have explored for centuries.

jerusalem painting 3 cropped  How needing of compassion are the ignorant and the deluded, bound in this confining dungeon of egotistical attachment and the subject-object dichotomy…

The Tibetan Book of the Dead

Blake saw his brethren bound in this dungeon, and sang of fallen Albion held in thrall to the satanic, scientific-materialism that set man apart from nature, charity and the Heaven within himself.


I am an artist, writer and sailor in the Pacific Northwest.

4 thoughts on “Higgily-Piggily Mindscape-an artwork in progress

  1. The muted color and spare imagery is a new direction for me. But maybe you refer to transition in another sense as well. I think of memory practice-memorization of sacred texts-as preparation a peaceful death.

  2. I am enjoying the subtleties in these paintings. Looks like your new approach is working. However, I do not understand why you say “I went from recalling no dreams at all…” when you have made references to them only recently.

    1. Thanks. Okay maybe it was a stretch to say no dreams at all. Jeez, not only am I busted by Asiatic Shamans, but my own girlfriend as well. I should say that the dramatic contrast-before and after the memory practice-with dream recall is so dramatic that it seems that way.

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