The Beginning and The Beginning Again

Here I am asking what would happen if we were all able to protect our children the way the powerful have done for centuries. What seems like paradise would cripple the earth and the only home we all know. So whose daughters should be sacrificed? This struggle has already turned us against each other. Maybe we should think more about our stewardship of the earth and of each other.

The multiple levels of limited sight in these children is a representation of our society. As children playing a game, unaware of each other except through performance, they are connected through the universally shared history of humanity. I am not depicting enemies here. Nor am I creating a portrait of a pariah. Each of us begins life learning what we must in order to survive. We each enter the game from different places and perspectives, with differing levels of preparation or instruction. Some of what we were taught, some of what we believe, leaves us blind. Some of it is possible to fix; for some of us, sight may never return. Still, life supports us—until it can’t.

The Beginning Again (in progress) 46 x 60 oil on canvas; born 12.21.11

I knew she was supposed to be here. it just took me a long time to figure out how to get her in. Now, I can go on.

“From the moment at which a painter begins to strike figures of color upon a surface he must become acutely sensitive to the feel, the textures, the light, the relationships which arise before him. At one point he will mold the material according to an intention. At another he may yield intention—perhaps his whole concept—to emerging forms, to new implications within the painted surface. Idea itself—ideas, many ideas move back and forth across his mind as a constant traffic, dominated perhaps by larger currents and directions, by what he wants to think. Thus idea rises to the surface, grows, changes as a painting grows and develops. So one must say that painting is both creative and responsive. It is an intimately communicative affair between the painter and his painting, a conversation back and forth, the painting telling the painter even as it receives its shape and form.” —Ben Shahn, Biography of a Painting