*an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.
This celebration, renewal and collision with the past and with the indians’ own identity, breaks down everyday order and routine to establish the magic dimension, the exception and the anomaly. An explosion of vitality, abundance and liberty demolishes everyday slavery and misery. But the festive chaos which transports one to the anomalous and to the sacred, simultaneously causes the return to profane normality. Just when the disorder and confusion reach the state of paroxysm, when everything is agitated and intermixed indiscrimanently, the celebration is over. The bands all play at the same time in deafening competition, the dancers can no longer hold themselves up, and all distinctions between groups, musicians, dancers and sexes are erased. It is the kacharpaya, the limit of disorder and cataclysm, which signals the return to routine.
To Cover in Order to Uncover, by Fernando Montes in Masks of the Bolivian Andes, Photographs: Peter McFarren, Sixto Choque, Editorial Quipos and BancoMercantil
Comments are welcome!
Q: Another interesting series of yours that has impressed me is your recent “Black Paintings.” The pieces in this series are darker than the ones in “Domestic Threats.” You create an effective mix between the dark background and the few bright tones, which establish such a synergy rather than a contrast, and all the dark creates a prelude to light. It seems to reveal such a struggle, a deep tension, and intense emotions. Any comments on your choice of palette and how it has changed over time?
A: That is a great question!
You are correct that my palette has darkened. It’s partly from having lived in New York for so long. This is a generally dark city. We famously dress in black and the city in winter is mainly greys and browns.
Also, the “Black Paintings” are definitely post-9/11 work. My husband, Bryan, was tragically killed onboard the plane that crashed into the Pentagon. Losing Bryan was the biggest shock I ever have had to endure, made even harder because it came just 87 days after we had married. We had been together for 14 ½ years and in September 2001 were happier than we had ever been. He was killed so horribly and so senselessly. Post 9/11 was an extremely difficult, dark, and lonely time.
In the summer of 2002 I resumed making art, continuing to make “Domestic Threats” paintings. That series ran its course and ended in 2007. Around then I was feeling happier and had come to better terms with losing Bryan (it’s something I will never get over but dealing with loss does get easier with time). When I created the first “Black Paintings” I consciously viewed the background as literally, the very dark place that I was emerging from, exactly like the figures emerging in these paintings. The figures themselves are wildly colorful and full of life, so to speak, but that black background is always there.
Comments are welcome!