It's like music to your eyes.

This was my mandala that I painted for the IF topic of "focused" (but didn't post). One of Ellie's friends was over when I was painting it.

I saw her recently and she said "Miss Patti, did you ever finish that painting that you were working on while I was at your house?"

I said, "Not really. I didn't like it much and I put it away in a drawer."

She told me she liked it very much and didn't understand why I wouldn't. I told her artists do that often – set paintings aside for a while. Sometimes you take a few steps back, sometimes you walk away completely and the paintings might look a little different after some time has passed.

At the time, I found this piece to be mundane. Not the painting itself so much, but I felt that I had painted so many similar mandalas that I could not do it anymore.

My current situation finds me experiencing much discordance and coming back to this – I don't find it boring, but calm and harmonic.

To add to all this, Maya recently argued with me that she does not like art at all because it is BORING. I held up painting after painting and she told me every one was BORING. She is an adolescent, so it is a healthy transition to express her own individual self, but I still tried to defend myself and my art. After a few minutes of banter I gave up.

Maya loves music and has a gift for it. I tried to explain to her that a painting is like music to your eyes. There's movement, emphasis, harmony, rhythm, all the same elements music has, only it's visual. She did not agree. I'm thinking about taking every piece of art off the walls in our house and see what she says. If I told her to imagine the world without art, I don't think she would try. . . because her mother made the suggestion.

My recent work has been highly influenced by music and playing drums on Beatles Rock Band has added to my appreciation for rhythm - audible and visual. A painting can be like a song. It doesn't have to be deeply profound and encompass everything at once. It could just make you feel good for a few short moments.


Anonymous said...

Yesterday, I was listening to an Mp3 file on the Windows Media Player. The images that were being created on the screen from the sound waves were absolutely BEAUTIFUL! They gave "image" to the sound! In fact, what actually caught my attention were the "mandalas" that were forming on the screen!
This is exactly what I thought of when I saw this picture!! A beautiful explosion of sound!
You couldn't have done it, or described it more perfectly!

Patrick said...

Hi Patty,

Thank you for sharing this story and this lovely mandala. Here are some thoughts that came to mind as I read it.

Years ago when my sister Eileen came to visit me, she noticed that I was listening to classical music, and she asked me, why? She and her husband are fans of bands like Cheap Trick, Journey, REO Speedwagon, etc. . . . She was surprised that I would have classical music on because she thought it was boring. Your mandala may be comparable to a style of music that Maya would also find boring, rather than to the style(s) that currently interest her.

In the early sixties Studs Terkel, in an interview with Bucky Fuller, waxed philosophic about the danger for children growing up at that time, that the sound of jet planes could drown out the song of the nightingale. The implication was that we might be so dazzled by the power of our modern technological world that we’d rarely if ever notice anything so delicate. Bucky acknowledged that it was an apt concern, but at the same time he expressed a faith that people would get out and away from the big jet planes, to places where nightingales could be seen and heard; and they would delight in their song in much the same way as their parents and grandparents did.


'becca said...

i swear the center of this mandalas shimmers.