Monday, November 26, 2012
Man with TV 1984/ before and after
My husband Bob and I have always had issues with the TV. We are addicts, Bob worse than me. We have tried different techniques over the years to try and keep our addiction under control, but now, past midlife, we have finally given in to the dark side and have a flatscreen TV and cable. Our only nod to our addictive selves is that we don't have a huge TV, just a mid-size one--kind of on the smallish side. This painting is about that addiction; the little TV with the rabbit ears our attempt to keep the importance of the TV to a minimum. Of course we both watched it all the time, so it was kind of silly.
I recently found a slide box full of before and after images, showing what the photographs looked like before I painted over them. In this photo, Bob had collapsed on the couch, tired from doing some kind of physical labor. The painting is so much more elegant and interesting than the photograph, although you can see the connection between the two. For example, one arm is "real", the other wiped so that the cushion on the sofa becomes the structure of the arm. I think what is most interesting in Man with TV is that the painting reveals something that couldn't be described otherwise: a reclining man in a gray world completely absorbed in the small square box in front of him.