Distraction, I mean. Yesterday I mentioned that this was the first year I didn’t get a happy birthday call from Mom, not because she forgot to call, but because she died earlier in the year. One of my ways of dealing with sadness and bad feelings has been to compartmentalize. However, it was hard to imagine how to distract myself from being yet another year into my 7th decade together with the loss of another who could verify circumstances of my early existence.
However, thanks to my wife, Joy, I was able to be most pleasantly distracted. We went to San Francisco to the de Young Museum to see an exhibition of J.M.W. Turner’s work. He was a British painter who is known for his atmospheric oil and watercolor painting style. Turner actually represents the invisible atmosphere in his work. Most of his canvases are downright luminescent, usually brightly lit with amorphous shapes that represent sunsets, windy or cloudy skies, or the turbulence of the sea, where the boundary between water and sky cannot be determined.
We saw other exhibits at the de Young. Of particular interest to me was a collection of abstract art from San Francisco Bay Area painters, many of whom were associated with the American Abstract Artists group. The paintings in this gallery, most of which were new to me. inspired me to continue my own efforts in abstract painting.
Finally, the gallery containing recently acquired prints by Richard Diebenkorn really sparked my interest. The clean lines and simple design gave me many ideas for my own work.
It was a very nice day, filled with enjoyment: enjoyment of seeing new things, learning and thinking of what to do in the future. I thank my dear wife for helping me with my distraction.