Dear Mr. Still
Dear Mr. Still,
In September 1979 I moved to New York City from Chicago after finishing graduate school at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and began to go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art every Wednesday between part time jobs. I saw your exhibition. More than once. And a volunteer from AMNH who was a friend, Ellen Friedman, gave me the catalogue. Twenty-five years later I visit the Clyfford Still gallery for long periods of time. I still look at Ellen's catalogue. The gallery is generally quiet with only a few people moving through. Most don't appear to understand the art movements of the twentieth century. Yet sometimes there are others who also sit quietly for a long time and muse.
You wouldn't approve of the dominant mode in New York City today. Even I'm estranged. I'm 65 but see myself as far older than my years, even though I’ve used fake fur and artificial flowers as points of contrast rich with meaning about life today. Because I believe that visual art should be a power object to be revered I am quite alone. Today being an artist is seen as an avenue to wealth and status more so than a serious hermetic calling. So many of our country are superficial in their interests-sports, sexuality, youth rather than introspection or philosophical questions. But my communion with art connects me to the past, the present and the future. Awareness of culture creates community. The visions of one person become the awareness of many.
As Charles says to me, "Irony is cowardice." I believe in making brave paintings.