It’s a snowy April day here where I live. A perfect day to sit down with a coffee and do some research. I’m getting back to a book I started a couple of weeks ago: Reading Cy Twombly Poetry in Paint by Mary Jacobus (Princeton University Press, 2016).
I love Twombly’s uninhibited scribbles and his use of text and writing. He drew inspiration from poetry. In the book Twombly is quoted “I like poets because I can find a condensed phrase…I always look for the phrase.” (p.3) Traditional poetry is not something I have used, but I do mine song lyrics. I connect with a phrase from a song and it becomes the catalyst for a work or a series of work. A small notebook is always in my bag to write down the names of songs, a lyric, or an artist to look up later. I have many sketchbooks filled with pieces of songs (usually more songs than sketches!). Some I go back to over and over again.
Moving from language as inspiration to using text or writing in my work is a new challenge. Seeing how other artists use words and language is part of figuring out what I connect with, and to give some direction to my experimentation. I recently saw work by Tacita Dean at a local art gallery. I loved the handwritten words in the pieces. (and, surprise, surprise, the black and white palette drew me in as well 🙂 )
It seems I always have at least a half dozen ideas floating around in my head about where I can go with my work. Research is the next step to solidifying those ideas and we’ll see where it takes me.