Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Hey Jackson Pollock

bead soup for freeform peyote bracelet
When I was an undergrad (history of art major with a focus on late medieval and early northern Renaissance), I saw a video if Jackson Pollock painting.  The video was filmed from the underside of a transparent sheet of something, and as Pollock painted he was narrating what he was doing.
 At a certain point he stopped and explained he was done - he had lost touch with the painting.  Done.  Nada más. I had a difficult time understanding that moment as a 19 year old.  I was taking a studio drawing class and my biggest challenge was knowing when to stop.  Of course Pollock didn't mean he was finished and the painting was great; he thought it was trashed.  I wonder about both of these issues.  When was a piece finished? When is one more line too much?  Beading, stringing, wirework, el al, is no different.  When am I done?
working on my third row

I continued for quite sometime with this piece, but after about 15 rows, and despite the fact that there were sections that I loved, I lost touch with it.  Done.  Nada más.  Something similar happened to me the day before yesterday.  I put together a piece of stringing and was all excited about the beads.  But BAM, it didn't speak to me.  So last night I took it apart.  I took out beads and left only two types and a pretty lampwork bead.  It came together.  Less is more.  These are slightly different problems, but in my mind they are connected.  Sometimes I know when something isn't working and sometimes I stubbornly plow ahead and pretend all is well.  Knowing when to stop and when one more bead is too many is the art.

No comments:

Post a Comment