Comfort and Control
"Comfort and Control," concerns a tension, sometimes dark, sometimes humorous, between aspects/objects we seek in order to comfort ourselves, and pacify our desire to control aspects of life that are uncontrollable, mostly love and death.
It was late. It was early. I couldn’t tell anymore and it didn’t matter anymore. I was in Byron Bay, New South Wales, the Easternmost point of mainland Australia. Our flight to Sydney had gotten cancelled and we had to turn around halfway to the airport.
Outside the world still turned and the birds still wailed at the sky, like cats in heat.
“Mary Magdalene,” a new piece, lay unfinished on the desk, as she so familiarly did, and every so often the chimes outside would line up into a song, or a break of chords.
It was late. It was early. I couldn’t tell anymore. He slept downstairs and I listened to the rain. I remembered myself, then forgot myself.
He worried about everything from the slightly opened package in the mail, or the error page after a gift ordering. He sat in his bones a lonely man at thirty one. Still, I loved him for everything he was.
He walked with a lanky stilted gait, his shoulders slightly hunched over, his hair silky black, with tones of brass. His eyes, pools of blasted sandstone. He sometimes had a startled gaze that a child would possess. Other times, he reflected a resigned life even being so young.
“Is this what life is?” he often asked. “I haven’t been happy in almost seven years.”
One day, in the midst of the hardest times, I left the house and went to a local salon. I asked them to lift my hair to the whitest shade of blonde. It turned out slightly yellow, but was decent looking and particularly shocking. Most missed the red, and then as the color grew on them they thought it looked nice. Later it would become a true platinum.
I spent the mornings trying to connect with friends, toasting a piece of wholemeal rye bread and brewing Italian coffee.
The other man who lived with us, and owned the place, said there were aboriginals buried in the land behind the factory and I began to question if they have something to do with the dark pools of energy collecting in the basement. There were two rooms down there. We rented both.
I had spent 122 consecutive days by his side. My sense of home became divided. I wondered constantly wether I was truly learning more about the importance of why I chose men who need me, or simply fading further away from the truth that is this life, ending in death.
I didn’t know that reality would turn out as it did, but then again I never had the white picket fence obligations for myself like many others have.
The rain hung low, the Magpies swooped in, the bikinis were terribly and beautifully skimpy.
I was passive aggressive at times, about my own reality. I was fully aware of it. The only thing that kept me in the moment and mostly alive was the act of creation, and this feeling was no stranger. If I am not creating, I might as well be dead. Rotting in the ground, but more tragically, unnecessary to this lifetime.
Still, I kept painting. I began a new series titled Comfort and Death. The paintings were strange, a bit lilted… and had unusual perspectives.
Weeds ran ragged and thick outside. Wild purple and fuschia and red and white flowers radiated from their stems. Australia was alive and wild. And I knew, even if it burned out like a legendary flame, I would never forget the love affair.
I currently have 6 paintings from this series completed in 2014-1015 hanging at Maxwell Colette Gallery May 12th - Mid June. The show features new work also by Alexis Nunnelly, Alyx Harch, Ariel Baldwin, Banrei, Kenrick Mcfarlane , Kira Scerbin and Matthew Avignon. It is curated by Claire Molek in collaboration with Maxwell Colette Gallery. It is a really special place of my soul - Comfort and Control. Hope to see you there and thank you as always for reading and looking!