Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tucson Weekly, Watering Dirt, Santana's "Smooth" Southwest October

What is uniquely desert behavior on a perfect October day? Dancing shamelessly in the sun to the sounds of Santana's song, "Smooth" (Supernatural), while wielding a garden hose, spraying a quarter of an acre of in-town dirt as clouds race overhead making curly-cue shapes, the way one might picture the bended notes of a great Santana riff.

I'm not alone. In Renée Downing's opinion piece in the local alternative news weekly, Tucson Weekly, she writes about this kind of collective giddiness when October hits the Old Pueblo. We know that we're going to have eight months of balmy days, cool days and a few days in which we can actually wear sweaters.

I put down that hose long enough to paint this painting: Harvest, (16" x 20", oil on artist's board).

Hope you're having a great week wherever you are, from behind cool sunglasses.


Edgar said...

Heh. Your vignette (with the hose on the dirt) reminds me that we all try to make our own rain. In our giddiness, we do child-like things like bike riding, with the occasional fractured result.

Love this painting and the surreal abstractions of the last two posts. I always loved the surrealists, especially the ones that strove for the archetypal imagery (ones like Klee and Miro, as opposed to the dreamers like Dali and Magritte). This work reminds me of them: playful, yet evocative of our most primal symbols: I see baskets, full of gathered things, fringes and talismans.

That, plus the almost automatic writing scribbles, and the rich textured paint make for a luscious surface. Nice painting.

Melinda, looking back on the several bodies of work you've explored—just since you started this blog—I'm so impressed with your endless creativity and talent. You've got a lot going on in that artist's soul! (See, I even used up one of my exclamation marks.) You are a painter's painter, and I know I'm not alone in admiring it.

Melinda said...

Gee, thanks, Edgar. Surreal? Hmm. I hadn't thought of it like that, but I like the label when it isn't associated with Dali and Magritte.

This was fun to paint--a little more representational than I had intended, but...mostly wanted to be playful.

Barbara Muir said...

Love the painting. I am so not behind cool sunglasses. It is cold again. I brought in cuttings today from a geranium plant that wintered over in my kitchen bravely last year as a cutting, and realized that that plant just keeps on going. It made me
happy, but the snow's acomin' girl. You can see it happening in northern Quebec and Nova Scotia, which means winter tires, silk undershirts, and
extra duvets. Many of us are not ready at all.

Super painting.


Melinda said...

Oh, Barbara! You don't need sunglasses to be cool. You ARE cool. And, I don't mean just weather-wise.

Do you have to change your tires?! Wow. I see that you're going to be ambling toward freezing weather tonight. Brrr. When it gets chilly here, I like to warm up with an electric blanket. Of course, for me, chilly is 50 and 60 degrees (10 to 15.55 Celsius)

I'm not crazy about this painting, but it was cheerful. Thank you!

Jeane Myers said...

wonderful post and so is the painting!

Linny D. Vine said...

Melinda, this painting is so wondeful: I'm aware that my imagination wants to give names to the different shapes and textures and forms as a basket but no... a prickly pear fruit but no...a crown but no...and then I travel all through the painting again... and again... this is a shameless fancy dancing creation!

Melinda said...

Ooooh. I love "shameless fancy dancing," Linny!

Please, name away! That's just what I hoped would happen.

Thank you so much! Virtual hug.

Joan Breckwoldt said...

Hi Melinda, what a wonderful painting, I am so glad you wrote about your inspiration and how you put down that hose to make time to paint this. When I look at the painting it makes me think of the day you described. We finally got cool weather here in Houston! I just hope it lasts more than 2 days. Lucky you, 8 months of cool weather!

Anonymous said...

Melinda- we've both posted parallel sentiments, minus the mention of Smoooooth ( one of my favorites, rife with memories of running on the West Side Highway with walkman on Supernatural ).

I've really enjoyed seeing the friskiness of your abstracts of late. Yes, I think we can both nod to Jala for her inspiration.

Goodbye to the relentless heat and hello to the Christmas winds and the light sweaters.

I always find so much of interest on your blog.
Thoughts, art, pieces of the pie of your life.
Really lovely.

Edgar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Melinda said...

Hi, Joan. Thank you so much for stopping by. I know just what you mean about hoping for more cool days. After such a hot summer it would be nice if it cools down a bit.

Good luck with your studio and weather!

Melinda said...

That IS intriguing, Bonnieluria. We're all ready for a change in the weather, aren't we? And, with just a hint of coolness, we set out to play in the garden, or dirt, yes?

Happy dancing, but careful with that pick ax! We need your great posts and artworks!