Score to Accompany the Changing Season was slow to mature. I first began a version of this painting almost a year ago, and sanded it off the panel about a month later. Last summer I tried again, with the same results. Last month, with more experience, I started again.
The painting is an interpretation of the pond’s surface between summer and fall, but I held two additional images in mind as I painted. The first image/idea was tapestry – that the interweaving of layered vegetation on and in the pond was Nature’s rendition of the word tapestry. I was also influenced by seeing the score for a player piano – that long roll of intermittent cut dashes which, coded into a continuous horizontal “grid,” is the basis for mechanically playing music. I imagined a relationship between the small dashes of “notes” and the patterns of duckweed layered over and between leaves and lily pads. I felt that the pond was presenting a silent score for more than one instrument – a silent orchestration, perhaps. Being familiar with the cd Ambient 2: The Plateaux of Mirror by Howard Budd and Brian Eno, I imagined the painting/score as a continuously evolving play of overlapping marks and patterns.
With all this in mind, and the cd on the stereo, I proceeded to build the layers of pattern, interweaving monoprint techniques, direct painting, and numerous layers of glaze. Finally the concept was clear enough in my head to actually finish the painting. Details are below. Enjoy!