|"A Weed is a Treasure" 72" x 40" Acrylic on canvas|
While contemplating the role of entropy in the natural environment in my last essay, I came across a seeming paradox in a simplified scientific explanation of this concept, which reminded me of Asian ideas. Entropy can be seen as the amount of energy available to do work, but not yet used, and it is also the tendency of a closed system to move from order to disorder. The paradox develops when a closed system becomes so perfect that it never changes, recouping a maximum of entropy, energy which is never used.
Such an idea of opposites in tandem simultaneously reminded me immediately of a text I had read on Japanese aesthetics. It also occurred to my faculty advisor, Peter Rostovsky, who suggested that I research the Japanese concepts wabi and sabi. This brought me back to my adolescence when I had studied Japanese ceramics and learned about the tea ceremony. Peter suggested that I think of my work as a pursuit of unfinishedness. My mentor, Suzanne Gauthier had already talked with me about letting the materials speak and forgoing much of the control I was imposing on them, a remarkably similar discussion I had had years before about my stoneware pottery (which I usually overworked)!
|"Curves" about 32" x 24" Acrylic on plywood panels|
I have put the router away. I prefer the natural grain of the wood and the roughness of ordinary wood chisels to help keep me from overworking the wood on the next projects.
|"Autumn" Stage 6 Acrylic on canvas 48" x 36"|