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Art of Succulents

October 12, 2009
amlight1

Ambiguous Light

Two occurrences in the last week or so caused me to look at some paintings of mine, forcing me come to what is probably a foregone conclusion at this point: I really love painting succulents! The first incident was the sad closing of a business that displayed several pieces of mine, including a large gicleé print of the above painting. We brought it home and put it up and I really liked looking at it, though I don’t think it’s right for the space it’s in and will probably remove it. I painted the original of this piece during a very difficult time and seeing it again I was able to conjure up some of the ways I felt then. Mostly, though, I was glad I had moved on from those feelings and that time. I could see that the painting was a way of dealing with them, though: the woman is looking tentatively ahead from behind a very complex agave attenuata, clearly a stand-in for myself as I began the healing process post-bypass surgery.

belleza

La Belleza

The other occurrence that caused me to look at my previous paintings was a commission for a painting that included a succulent. I haven’t painted consistently for a couple years now so I wanted to see what I’d done before. Kind of a reminder to myself that I could do it. The piece above features a rather adrogynous person confronting the viewer with their gaze and holding a succulent that’s both feminine and masculine in front of them. I like ambiguity, clearly, and somehow the bold succulent, male and female in shape and color, appeals to me in the same way. The piece’s title means ‘Beauty’ in Spanish and speaks to both subjects in the piece.

nino1

El Niño Dios

This painting was 6-feet tall and I loved both doing it and seeing it in a gallery. The little boy is a god of sort, looking out at the viewer with a combination of both directness and puzzlement. The ant/pilgrim, with his plea scrawled on a strip of paper, is unaware of his deity’s childish immaturity as he makes his arduous climb up the massive aloe tree. This is one of the few paintings I’ve sold that I’d buy back if I could.

noche

La Noche

This painting was a wish for peace and sleep. Post-surgery, I had a terrible time finding sleep and I wished while painting this that I could be as peaceful as this floating figure. I’m not really a meditative person, I don’t think, but the friend who bought this piece is, or at least aspires to be, and she loves it very much. I loved painting the succulent reaching up to the face.

Once this latest commission is finished, the deadline is early next month, I’ll post the finished piece here. I can’t wait to see it!

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Nancy Rivera Brooks permalink
    October 12, 2009 6:57 pm

    I love your paintings

  2. Lindsay permalink
    October 27, 2009 3:09 am

    Ambiguous Light was my favorite! I almost bought it at your gallery opening. Hint! hint! 🙂 Love you, Reuben

    • reubix1 permalink*
      October 27, 2009 3:37 am

      Lindsay! Thanks so much for checking out the blog, and for such a nice comment. I wish you’d told me you liked ‘AmLight’ so much… I’ll see what I can do, maybe a gicleé of this piece is in your future! Hope you’re feeling better soon, Paul told you had the flu… Take care, Reuben

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  1. Art of Succulents: Nancy’s Gift « Rancho Reubidoux

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