Winter weather has come to the desert. It slipped in yesterday from the Northeast. This morning flurries drift about and cling to the dried vegetation and try to calm a moistureless ground. Fog hangs on our mountain and I realize I like this. I like this absence of color and this absence of warmth. It pulls me inward and seems so familiar, as if, an old friend has returned. You know, the type of friend you didn't think you missed until they stand before you again.
Winter. I can handle some cold. Inside there is heat.
I always find it interesting how a work evolves. One can start with what seems to be the clearest of ideas, only to have it change as the piece progresses. Of course, every brushstroke can begin a new conversation or build onto the existing dialogue. The hard part seems to be determining when to stop the exchange; determining when you have said enough. It is at those times when I begin to understand abstraction and envy the minimalist.
I am working on a new painting today. It's another self-portrait. (I must find a new model or models.) This one is addressing this thing called aging. I know it's probably more psychological than physical, but when you reach your sixth decade, the concept of "old" takes on a whole new meaning. It sits with you in the early morning hours. That time when you assume the rest of the world is asleep, but you know they are not. So many are eager to tell of their restless nights. The old ones are watching and now you watch with them.
Pat Greenwell is an artist. A painter and sometimes poet, he has been searching the New Mexico desert for several years now, looking for lost possibilities and probable intentions.
"...mostly stream-of-consciousness stuff, you know...