Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Xanadu pt 27 and A Little Re-introduction

For those of you newcomers to this blog, I've been posting updates 2 or 3 times a week of a painting I'm working on that features an unfinished mega-mall in the New Jersey Meadowlands.

Progress has been a little slow lately, or so it might seem. I say that because if you were the size of an ant, it would look like I paint the Sistine Chapel every goddamn night. I went out today and bought 2 more #0 brushes because the stage this painting is in right now is rendering every foxtail in a scene which features about 70% meadow. Its tedious and painstaking but its a labor of love. OK, maybe somewhere between love and hate, depending on my mood, but either way its a fucking obsession.

The painting is part of a larger project in which I'm attempting to demonstrate the relentless of Nature by studying human activity and its obstacles in a vast, polluted wetland a few miles to the west of New York City. The project's title, Five Miles From Times Square was taken from the website of the city of Secaucus, NJ, on which it boasts a small town atmosphere only five miles from Times Square.

Secaucus is located in the middle of The Meadowlands, which is still considered a wilderness. I found it ironic that a wilderness can still exist so close to what is pretty much the high holy ground of artificial, commercial culture: Times Square. This is so, I believe, because Mankind has met a formidable challenge in trying to develop the region.

The Meadowlands have been the target of several attempts to drain it, fill it and reclaim the swamps for usable land, and yet it still remains. In an area where real estate is in extremely high demand, it seems like it should have been a forgone conclusion that it be filled in and developed. Yet there it is, in all its polluted, swampy glory. And I've been taking trips up there over the last 2 or 3 years to take photos, do research, and make paintings of what I've found.

Now you are here, and I mean you who are reading these words, however you may have stumbled upon this post. I invite you to visit older posts, or perhaps go back in time in the Xanadu painting to see where I have been up to this point, this 4th day of August, 2011, just past the stroke of midnight. I was worried that people who happened upon this blog may not fully understand its purpose, and what I'm trying to accomplish.

So, please allow me to re-introduce myself. I'm not a man of wealth and taste, I'm an artist trying to find his place in the world, and one who has an unhealthy obsession with a swamp in New Jersey.

And lest I forget, here's Xanadu pt 27. Stick around and see how it ends.

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