Painting as a focal practice.

Painting has such a commanding presence when I am “in the zone.” To sit there for hours upon end, extracting the shapes and colors from the mud changes my thinking, as if my brain is on another more vibrant level. Things become clear. I feel more articulate.

To compare this with the feeling of spending that time on the computer is interesting to me. Computer time is more like becoming a receptacle to information. I am excited to learn new ways of digesting and structuring that information, but I don’t achieve the active agency that closes the loop so to speak. It’s all downloading into the mind, much like the helicopter instructions in the matrix movie. I think ultimately, that leads to an overwhelmed feeling, because there is literally no end to the information, and therefore nothing to stand upon. Where do you draw lines of value?

Painting provides a reflection point back upon the self. One that reinforces and centers value.
It’s what I like to call participatory consciousness, or passionate engagement. The way that your reflection always meets with you when you look into a puddle or pass a mirror. The agency of that meeting is shared between you and the reflection. Mind like water.

With a computer, you lack that bounce back. The more you engage with computers, the more information pours into your brain, and the more your soul gets sucked out into the vapid realm of indifference.

If you’re not careful.


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