July 16, 2021 Weekly Musings

Christine Alfery

Posted on July 15 2021

July 16, 2021 Weekly Musings

Announcements:

Red Dress Selected in MOWS 2021 International Exhibition

Posted June 12, 2021

The Red Dress has been selected into the 2021 International Exhibition at the 

Missouri Watercolor Society Gallery in St Louis, Missouri. Judge Ken Call chose 79 paintings by artists from 27 states and 5 foreign countries. 

 

The exhibition will run August 27th - October 2, 2021.

 

Blogs:

What Is It With ArtNet News?

Posted July 12, 2021

Featured image: Exotic Flower- Bird of Paradise

What is it with ArtNet News? In April they had a feature about President Joe Biden’s granddaughter's artwork – and now there's a news feature about Hunter Biden selling his artwork for up to $500K. When ArtNet News did the feature on Joe Biden's granddaughter, I wrote a blog about the feature. Click here to read blog, What do Sylvestor Stallone and Roberta Mabel Biden have in common? and was rather critical of the first granddaughter's work and of the art market for accepting a work as art simply because of the name that was linked to it.


Now we have a feature from ArtNew News on the emergence of a new artist, Hunter Biden, painting works that illustrate his quest for “universal truth.” He paints in his Hollywood Hills pool house which he turned into an art studio. Before I say anything more – my studio is a converted bedroom in my ranch style home. Many other artists work off their kitchen table, just saying, you know. But, before I even started to read the featured article, I found that I was saying to myself, "Really, – really again? Are we going to accept Hunter Bidens straw blowing work on paper as art?" I was pleasantly surprised at the reception that his work is getting from the art industry.


Critic Saltz offered Hunter some advice, “Lose the Big signature at once; forget the Kusama dots altogether, experiment with the surface and color and tools. Really consider the whole-page as a space and not make everything derivative all over composition. The background doesn’t always have to be white, you big baby.”


Yes – some honesty from an art critic for once.


Art critic Scott Indrisek states: “Hunter's paintings have a kind of vaguely scientific, vaguely psychedelic vibe that reminds me of Fred Tomaselli – if Fred Tomaselli started making art for dermatologists waiting rooms. But then again, the process here seems more important than the finished product. Guess it’s important that wounded men of a certain age and privileged background have the opportunity to find themselves creatively … it’s just too bad that everyone else is expected to pay attention.”


Yes, yes, yes! Hurrah for Scott Indrisek, formerly deputy editor of Artsy!
Artnet News’s own art critic Ben Davis had a somewhat more favorable response: “As digital images, at least, they are pleasing. It’s hard to say what they look like without seeing how the actual paper holds the ink. You can’t really judge it from your desktop.”


“It doesn’t seem like there’s a style or a theme, just a kind of seeing-what-pattern-the-ink-suggests kind of thing,” Davis added. “It seems like he’s trying to occupy his mind, and three of the four you see kind of read as trying to fill up the empty space and to make some structure out of a mess—so pretty allegorical in terms of where he finds himself.”


I am proud of Artnet News for finally not marketing an object as art just because a famous person created it. Just because they are famous, doesn’t make them an instant artist. I gave examples in the first article I wrote about this – you can judge for yourself.


Perhaps Hunter needs to take advise from the book, "How To Be An Artist by Jerry Saltz." Saltz offers invaluable insight into what really matters to emerging artists: originality, persistence, a balance between knowledge and intuition, and that most precious of qualities, self-belief. And yes, perhaps, Hunter will think twice about his authenticity as an artist.

 

What's In The Clouds?

Posted July 13, 2021

Featured image: The Mask


Have you ever looked up into the sky and visualized or imagined animals, fish, people or landscapes in them? Today I saw a bear – a leaping bear. Its mouth was wide open with teeth showing and he had round ears and a short tail. (Do bears even have tails? I'll have to look that one up.)

The sun's rays were radiating from behind the bear. The edges of the cloud were glowing.

The same imagining and concept creating happens when I begin to create with paint. I take very abstract forms and imagine what they could be, and then, I begin to create.

That is what happened in my work, “Mask.” The concept, the idea of a mask conjures up all kinds of meaning not only for me but also for the viewer. For me, it is about being your authentic self and not being what others want you to be.

 

 I Am An Artist

Posted July 14, 2021

Featured image: Yellow Daisies

I am an artist.

I am a trader.

If you do not value what I have to trade, that is ok with me. If no one values what I have to trade, well, then I am in trouble and we as a country are in trouble because we will have become machines, stamping out the same ol', same ol.' It would be no longer creatively thinking about possibility.

I am an artist.

I am a trader.

What I have to trade, what I will trade with others is this creativity. But, I won’t trade it with those who do not understand and value creativity and using their mind the way that I do. I will only trade things of equal value, creativity with creativity. And another's creativity may be how they value creativity. They are rare.

 

What is Nature?

Posted July 15, 2021

What is nature?


What is human nature?

For me, nature is the, "yes, yes, yes." It is the everything, the sum of all things and it is interconnected to everything. The new symbols in some of my compositions that look like constellations, illustrate this interconnectedness.


The Journey Of A Gypsy by Christine Alfery


For me, there are always two major questions that I ask about nature.

  • How is nature governed/controlled?
  • And how is it identified/labeled?

For example, trees are controlled or governed differently than the idea of self or soul are. That is to say, unless the trees are trimmed, groomed and made to be other than what they are.


When I think of my authentic self, I think of how I relate to things/elements and how they are governed and identified. If they are difficult to govern/control, I find I relate to them in an authentic way. Why? I find the creativity in things when they are less governed and not easily identified. It is in the authentic space of creativity that I find freedom. It is in the abstract space that I find freedom.


Abstraction is difficult to govern and difficult to identify. But, it is definitely related, interconnected to all things – and is natural. I identify abstraction with the descriptors and the labels of the concept abstraction. Abstractions.
Artist network identified abstraction as:


Abstraction literally means the distancing of an idea from objective referents. That means, in the visual arts, pulling a depiction away from any literal, representational reference points. You can also call abstract art nonrepresentational art.


Wikipedia states that abstraction is: abstract art uses visual language of shape, form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world.


So the nature of abstract art as I said suits me. It is independent, and distances itself from objective referents which can be controlled. That is the nature of abstraction – that for me is the nature of art. And these concepts, these ideas are interconnected.

One would assume that because I think of nature this way, I could be called a naturalist. One problem, I am far from being a naturalist. And I have always, always avoided labels like short, old, white. So, why do I say that? Because a naturalist only describes difference this way, this tree is green, this tree is orange.


I am more of a romantic. I describe, but I describe a tree more like this: I love(value) the green tree that stands very tall in the woods. I love (value) that tree because its difference for me is the changes which is something that I value. It changes with the seasons.


A naturalist is not expected to value, I find it is impossible for me not to value because of my authenticity and uniqueness, To suppress this would not be authentic (formally understood as natural) for me.


Oh, words are so much fun.

 

 

New Works:

 

The Mask

 

On The Road Again II

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