Archive for June, 2021

Waking to a New Dawn

June 12, 2021

Presumptuous is the artist who does not follow his road through to the end. But chosen are those artists who penetrate to the region of that secret place where primeval power nurtures all evolution.

Paul Klee, On Modern Art

I woke at 6:30 this morning feeling that I could shake paintings out of my shirt sleeves. Looking out the second-story window of my dining room in the Redlands Hotel, I felt the historic Carnegie Library looking back at me, affirming and encouraging me to follow my bliss.

Before retiring to bed late last night, I read from Paul Klee’s lecture On Modern Art, and stopped on the passage posted above. The word chosen arrested my attention as I came to the realization that I didn’t choose Art. Art chose me. From my childhood, it was the only talent I had, the only interest I pursued.

I recalled the scene from “Life Lessons”, a selection from the film New York Stories. Nick Nolte stars as Lionel Dobie, a Willem de Kooning-type artist who has dominated the New York art scene for years. Now he is deviled by his attractive assistant who frustratingly wants all the art success to come to her right now. She cries out, asking if he thinks her art is any good. His answer: “What different does it make what I think. It’s yours.” He goes on to tell her that artists make art because they have no choice.

I make art because I have no choice. Taking a page from Aristotle, art is in me, and it must come out. Does the bird singing in the morning have any idea that the sounds it makes are beautiful to the human ear, or is the bird just doing what birds do by nature? Does the spider spinning at dawn have any idea of the beauty, the geometry, the symmetry of its web, or is the spider merely spinning out the essence of its character?

My own artistic impulse was set free the day I realized that the world doesn’t need my art. The market doesn’t wait breathlessly for my next piece. That is liberating. Grateful to be retired and on an adequate pension, I can pursue my own bliss without apology or permission. And as I work (play), I am not deviled by questions such as “Is this any good?” or “Will this sell?” I make art because I have no choice. And while making it, the world is better, for me anyway.

Before closing, I would like to post Paul Klee’s remarks in full, for anyone wishing to read his powerful words:

Presumptuous is the artist who does not follow his road through to the end. But chosen are those artists who penetrate to the region of that secret place where primeval power nurtures all evolution.

There, where the power-house of all time and space–call it brain or heart of creation–activates every function; who is the artist who would not dwell there?

In the womb of nature, at the soure of creation, where the secret key to all lies guarded.

But not all can enter. Each should follow where the pulse of his own heart leads.

I am David Tripp. And this is what I do. Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Thoughts from the Redlands Hotel

June 11, 2021

June 2, 2021

Hello, Sandi?

“Hi there. I suppose you’re in the middle of a class?”

“Actually, yes.”

Well . . . I’m gonna have to ask you to cut it short . . . There’s been an accident. Christine is driving me to Huguley Emergency Center.”

I put down the phone, in shock.

“Really sorry folks. I gotta go. Now. Sandi has been in an accident involving her horse. She’s being taken to the emergency room. I have no details.”

I fumbled to gather my art materials, struggling to think of what to put in which container.

“We’ve got this. We’ll lock everything up for you . . . you need to get outta here.”

I don’t remember the 45-minute drive through traffic from south Arlington to south Fort Worth. All I could think of was: what happened? Did she take a fall from her mount? Did the horse trample her in the stall (Sandi is petitie; her horse is 17.3 hands tall)? There were no details shared.

Arriving at the emergency room, I immediately saw Sandi being admitted, seated in a wheelchair, and forgetting protocall, I nearly fainted at the thought of paralysis.

The news was serious, but not nearly as serious as I’d feared. Struggling with a 120-lb. hay bale in the back of her truck, Sandi lost her balance when the hay hook tore loose from the bale. She pitched headfirst off the tailgate, hitting the ground below squarely on her face. Raising her head, she saw that the hay hook had plunged all the way through her hand, from the palm through the back. The medical staff, concerned about broken bones, immediately performed CT scans to see if there was any vertebrae damage or broken arms or wrists. Everything negative. Examining the injured hand, the specialist marveled that only muscle was damaged, no bones, tendons or ligaments were touched by the spike. Therefore, Sandi’s hand should heal in time without surgery or rehab.

All this happened nine days ago, hence a blog hiatus. I couldn’t think. Couldn’t read. Couldn’t write. This past week-and-a-half has been a fog. I have spent some time alone in the gallery, but couldn’t concentrate much, thinking of Sandi back home recuperating, and grateful for the many friends who came visiting, bringing food, and working to keep our chins up. Sandi is mending and in better spirits now. I’m at the gallery for two days only, then heading back to be where I really belong and want to be.

Now to catch up on Gallery at Redlands news . . .

Palimpsest, 22 x 33″ framed watercolor. $1500

I am proud finally to hang my latest framed watercolor Palimpsest in the Gallery. Today has been busy with traffic and sales in the gallery. If things slow down later tonight, I plan to resume work on my Sacred Heart watercolor. So far I have worked only on the night sky. This beautiful church is across the street from The Gallery at Redlands and I see portions of its upper story through the windows of this space throughout the day.

The Gallery is taking on a new look as we continue to add new work and new artists to our mix.

Wayne White, Fork in the Road 16 x 21″ Fractured Glass Photograph, $200

Photographer Wayne White, my friend since second grade and also the muse for my “Hank” stories in an upcoming book, has just submitted his latest fractured glass photograph to sell in our gallery. We have it on display currently in the lobby window. You will want to check this one out.

We are also proud to welcome painter John D. Westerhold to our gallery family. John has been featured several times in southwest art magazine, and we’re proud that his latest published painting Reflections of a Fat Boy is now on display in our window looking out to the street.

(Sorry about the reflections!) Reflections of a Fat Boy, Acrylic, 36 x 48″ $8500

It feels good to be in the Gallery again and blogging again. I’ll be here till we close around 9:00 tonight and will be around all day Saturday till our 9 p.m. closing.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.