Posted in Paintings in Progress

The Memory Theatre-an artwork in progress

sculpture stationsculpture station
Second Memory Station

A dream:  I am building a stretcher (wood frame to stretch canvas over for painting) for my February art show.  After I nail it together, I see that I’ve used 2×4’s which are too heavy and ungainly for the size of the painting.  The center brace is too short and part of it is made of ground contact, pressure treated wood, a toxic and inappropriate material for a stretcher.

Now this is where it gets interesting.  A dream about my upcoming art show.  This project is continuous  with the practice I undertook to memorize dreams in order to gain a broader perspective on the work.  This is a view informed by the heart as well as mind.  A kind of feedback loop is created:  The intention to bring the dream to the waking world coincides with an awareness of waking life (art show) within the dream state.  This opens a dialogue between the flow of unconscious imagery and conscious intent.  It gives valuable clues on how to proceed.

I’m not sure what the symbols of treated 2×4’s and toxic ground contact, pressure treated wood tells me.  But I have an intuition that it relates to right proportion, appropriate measure-ways and means.

I’ve long intuited that lucid dreaming abides by the golden mean proportion.  It is not just control of dreams, but a way to avoid getting lost in allurements, terrors and distractions; mesmerized by the phantasms that present themselves as real.  It depends on the right proportion between waking and dream.  These contraries are held in a dynamic tension and generate a third element-a state which transcends contradiction. The point of all this is to gain clear awareness of profound emptiness.  This is the truth of the most fundamental Buddhist koan:

Form is emptiness, emptiness is form. – Heart Sutra

I began sculpting memory stations with plaster to use as a basis for drawings- studies for a series of large paintings.

This one has taken a vaguely angelic form.angel drawingangel drawing

The challenge is to paint these ethereal beings without sappy cliché.

  Without contraries there is no Progression.       -William Blake