Thursday, November 23, 2017

Mud and Transcendence

Another view of Rue Celony in Aix.  The experience of Rue Celony has to be contemplated in paint over time.  It's not something I can absorb and understand all at once.

Here's another interesting passage from the James Elkins book What Painting Is:  "What matters in painting is pushing the mundane toward the instance of transcendence.  The effect is sublimation, or distillation: just as water heats up and then suddenly disappears, so paint gathers itself together and then suddenly becomes something else -- an apparition hovering in the fictive space beyond the picture plane.  The boiling point, just before the substance evaporates, is the crucial moment, and it is vexed."

By the word 'mundane' Elkins means that paint stuff, which comes in tubes, and is formless when spread on a palette, and is like mud.

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