Thursday, July 26, 2018

Poppies III

Visit Christine in her studio during Northwoods Art Tour in the Minocqua, Wisconsin Area - July 27-29. Studio hours for the tour are 10-5. The entire new Circus Series to date will be on display during the tour.

Featured image: "Poppies III" 8"x8" x12"x12" Framed, Watercolor and Acrylic on Paper

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Northwoods Art Tour July 27-29

Hope to see you during Northwoods Art Tour - July 27-29. Studio hours for the tour are 10-5. The entire new Circus Series to date will be on display during the tour.
Title: Clown and Her Trickster Dog 8x8 framed 20x20 Acrylic and Watercolor on Paper. Part of At The Fishing Cabin Series and Circus Series.

Monday, July 23, 2018

Is Art About Unknowables?

Thinking about this question I immediately start reflecting on abstract art and color fields.  I think of Paul Jenkins work and the work of current day arts who create work from “poured” colors.  The content of these works is???????  I am not sure.  Beautiful flowing color but does that make it art?  When Paissul Jenkins first introduced the poured color fields he was working in a different time.  The goal of many artists during that time was to find purity to find bliss, to find utopia and present it. 

Jenkins time was trying to identify the mystical source of all things and make it objective.  Artists today are still trying to identify that mystical source that comes from no where they claim and just is there.  They have made very little progress in finding that special kind of unknowable so they link this unknowable to their feelings.  How they feel about a work of art? 

Feelings do very little when it comes to the progress of knowing something – for they are individual and unique.  Perhaps subjective feelings are the largest gulf between objectively knowing something and art, so how can art be objectively know.  How can we begin to make progress in the aesthetic of knowing what art is and the forever idea that art is just based on feeling?

A good starting place might be does the work and the artist present a sense of life?  A sense of life has endless possibilities – including color fields that in the past have come from a search for the unknowable. Perhaps the color fields of today come from that which an artist knows, their foundation and their sense of life.  The joy of the birth of something.

Featured image: "Radishes II"  11x15. Watercolor, Acrylic on Paper.  Artist Christine Alfery

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Best Of Show. "Ringmasters Coat." 30x40 Acrylic and Watercolor on paper.

Best of Show.  “Ringmaster’s Coat,” Watercolor and acrylic on paper.  “The perspective in this painting is abstract and compelling.  You can feel the hum and vibrancy of the circus, combined with a vibrant depiction of the ringmaster as he controls, or ties to control the chaos.  Anne Katz, judge, MAL Annual Exhibition, is the executive director of Arts Wisconsin and is nationally-known arts advocate.  Ringmasters Coat is currently on display at the Manitowish Waters Art Leagues annual exhibition.  It will be on display until Sunday July 22.  Gallery hours are from 9-6 Thursday, Friday, Saturday and 9-2 on Sunday.  

Ringmasters Coat will also be on display during the Northwoods Art Tour July 27-29 in Christine Alfery's studio.  Studio hours for the tour 10-5.  The entire circus series to date will be on display during the tour.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

The Bridge

I heard her, then I saw her. I have one hummingbird coming to the feeder on a yearly basis. I am so delighted she returns year after year to bring me joy with my morning coffee. Today there is also the finch calling and the rain quietly falling. Good day to work in the studio.

Artwork by Christine Alfery. "The Bridge" 8"x8" Acrylic and watercolor on paper. Part of the "At The Fishing Cabin Series."

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

"The Song She Sings."

Moving discovering, exploring – art and the artist. Perpetual discovering, perpetual motion, perpetual movement, forever discovering, the life and work of an artist. To be an artist you must be an artist every day and sing your life's song.

Friday, July 13, 2018

What Is Art? Part 3

"..the earth, and compel men entranced by the sight of distant goals to glance for a moment at the

surrounding vision of form and colour, of sunshine and shadows: to make them pause for a look,
for a sigh, for a smile—such is the aim, difficult and evanescent, and reserved only for a few to achieve.”

"This applies to my goal to make people stop and not just glance at my work but really see it and the
world it conveys." Kay Lorbecki

“ All art appears primarily to the senses, …. All art must make its appear through the senses, if its high desire is to reach the secret spring of responsive emotions.”  Joseph Conrad. Preface to, “The .... of the Narcissus.” This preface was written in 1957.  Back then in order for something to be called “art”  it needed a purity, to it, a notion of originality, the senses it was believed was one way of finding and expressing that purity.  Since then this notion of purity through the senses has transformed, morphed into art can be anything and everything and anyone can be an artist. And I don’t need to understand it because it’s art.
If art is anything and everything then it is nothing.  If art is only related to the senses and it is the individuals personal senses and every individuals sense of art is right – then there is nothing right in art.  And again art is nothing.

Art needs to be sensed, but that is not the only thing that makes art art – the notion of originality hasn’t changed.  The dictionary defines originality as “the ability to think “– note the word think here – “independently and creatively.  The quality of being novel or unusual.  Inventiveness, ingenuity, creativeness, creativity, innovation, novelty, freshness, imaginations, individuality, unconventionality, uniqueness, distinctiveness.” 

This, uniqueness,  includes the senses.  Your senses my senses are one of a kind, unique – so then how do we know a work is a work of art if the concept of art is dependent on originality and the senses.  So when one looks at a work of art – one can sense it is a a horse say, but how is that horse rendered.  If the life of the artist and the horse evident in the work.  If the viewer only sees what is recognizable, then that sense is not unique – the viewer and the artist need to move beyond, discover what is the uniqueness of the form and how the artist uniquely rendered it. 

Does this mean anything uniquely rendered is art?  No because then all unique things could be called art.  It takes more and I do believe that Conrad captured that sense of moreness with his comment, “To arrest, for the space of a breath, …and compel men entranced by the sight of distant goals to glance for a moment at the surrounding vision of form and colour, of sunshine and shadows; to make them pause for a look, for a sigh, for a smile – such is the aim, difficult and evanescent and reserved only for a few to achieve.  But sometimes, by the deserving and the fortunate, even that task is accomplished.  And when it is accomplished – behold! – all the truth of life is there: a moment of vision, a sign, a smile – and the return to an eternal rest.” Joseph Conrad. Preface to, “The .... of the Narcissus,”

So dear friend Kay Lorbecki I come to the same conclusion that you have re the question what is art and I have returned to the quote you like from Conrad

Just what is it about art that holds you as an artist captive?  What is it that you think art is?

"Soulful Jazz Singer - Moody Sax Player." 11"x15" Acrylic, watercolor on paper. Artwork by Christine Alfery. At The Fishing Cabin Series.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

What Is Art? Review of Joseph Conrads Preface. Part 2.

I personally believe that an artist needs to think – to use her mind when she is working and creating. Using ones mind allowing for concepts/ideas to be formed and created is part of the entire process of creating a work of art. Using ones mind also integrates the foundations an artist stands on with these concepts and ideas.
So it should not be surprising when I say I disagree with Joseph Conrads comment in his preface to
“The ....... of the Narcissus,” that “The artist appeals to that part of our being which is not dependent on wisdom; to that in us which is a gift and not an acquisition…” Suggesting that art is a gift is something that many creative people say about themselves, or find that others say about their work, examples include, “oh Christine you are so gifted” or an answer I frequently find myself saying, and I have blogged about, “I have no idea where it comes from, it is just there. It is a gift.“ In truth, for me anyway, it comes from my foundations and my ambitions and drives, it comes from hard work and as a friend Carole Marotti said to me, “you took the blessing and made it flourish.” That is individualism, that is uniqueness which I have always said is what art is all about.

Artwork by Christine Alfery. Watercolor and Acrylic on paper. 11x15.