Oh man. I took up the early-in-the-day challenge presented by visionary, Rich Theroux and painted based on Wendy O. Williams. I departed from the three concepts that arrived on the creative wheel before the battle. First off, I don’t like Punk/ Metal. Not liking something goes beyond not appreciating it. I find that Metal and Punk grate on my nerves. I find that these genres are not ‘musical’, at least not in my mind. However, I decided that since the Gorilla House always shakes me up artistically for one reason or another, I would take up the challenge.
I watched some of the Plasmatics music on old Youtube videos in the afternoon. I wondered why Wendy had to wear such provocative clothing. I wonder the same thing when I see Lady Gaga. I wonder about the provocateurs, more so, from the female side of things than the male side. (look, I’m just being honest). I don’t get why females need to play on their sexuality while male performers seem to play on their strength and their gritty sweat. I just don’t get how that can equate with being ‘heavy’, as Wendy professes in this interview.
I once bought tickets for Metallica. My son, daughter and I bought the t-shirts…the hat. And quite honestly, I was impressed! I thought that the drumming, in particular, was fantastic. My first encounter with Metal.
So, the painting.
Recently I’ve had two amazing encounters with bald eagles at the river bottom. On one of these, I was visiting a place where I used to walk my old boy, Laurie-dog. I had Max out and had not yet set him off leash, but was heading to the ridge. Out of nowhere, the swooshing of massive wings…a diving and pitching of a form in front of a perfectly blue sky, seagulls cawing and screeching and speeding toward the target. Then everything came into perspective a mere ten meters above my head. The eagle was carrying a huge writhing fish in its talons. Its head and tail shimmered a brilliant white. I could see the wounds on the fish’s body…that’s how close I was. Up it rose, sending the seagulls in a swoosh of white energy, in multiple directions. I stood perfectly still, in awe…of strength, beauty, struggle, survival.
The second encounter was quite a bit north on the river, near the irrigation canal and the Bow River Canoe Club. Less dramatic, but also so overwhelmingly beautiful because of its proximity to me…this time I might have touched the bird had it dipped a tad closer. The eagle carried a mass of nesting material in its talons…likely a full cubic foot of dried grasses/sticks and such. I’d never seen anything quite like it. I focused on its wings, the strength of them, the propulsion of the amazing animal north and away.
In the ending, the painting combined my thoughts on music, power, self expression, evolution, transformation. I took the eagle of my experience and transformed it into this ‘metal’ beast, a bird that represented anything but the natural forms that I encounter on a personal front at the river. This piece is a departure for me. The Gorilla House art battle tends to bring experimentation with materials and subject matter to the forefront. Thanks to Daniel for your purchase of this piece at auction.
I’m including here, a series of embroidery pieces hung in the recent GH exhibit that represent my concept of transformation/deconstruction as well.