Monday, March 28, 2011

Muddy Just One More Time

This series within a series was a little unusual for me. Generally I don't do subjects that are so intimate, and I almost never revisit a subject after I've painted it once. I usually get it out of my system and move on. However, this time I was moved by what I saw in that canal in Lyndenhurst on that Sunday afternoon last May. I was disturbed and intrigued and there was no doubt that I had to communicate what I was witnessing. Imagine you're canoeing down a lazy creek through a tall meadow. It's muddy and buggy, but that's what you'd expect from a swamp. Suddenly you notice that the banks of the creek are not just mud but garbage. And its not just the banks. The whole expanse of marsh through which this creek passes is entirely founded on garbage. It's piled more than 3 feet high above the water line, and no telling how far below it goes. It's entirely conceivable that the creek bed below your boat is also a bed of civilizations's waste. It's pure human degradation. Our species is permanently fouling the landscape with its toxic byproducts and letting foxtails grow on it hoping no one would ever notice. Only a few people ever do and the vast majority of those who don't either wouldn't care or would be unable to appreciate the severity of what they were seeing. This is the result of our way of life. Surely the planet will survive, but who will possibly be able to live on it.

Muddy Little Secrets III, 30" x 48", oil on canvas, 2011

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