Quite a while ago in this blog, I wrote about the artist Joan Miro (Peinture-Poésie). I was fascinated by his paintings and how he used icons. For a while, I tried developing my own expressive shorthand (Narrative or Portrayal of Feelings; ‘Stop’ Icon Development; Icons in Practice; Progress in Iconology).  I was, on the whole, unsuccessful.

I made some progress in the past few days. In particular, the post that opened a new vein (in both metaphorical senses of the word) was my emotionally charged portrait (All Feelings Are OK) of Mike, my older brother. Mike is very low functioning, autistic and has never spoken. The core memory that sparked the portrait was from the last time I saw Mike. Here is a photo from that visit that shows the strong features I remember:

Mike Portrait at Geriatric Facility

After hours of doodling, I developed an icon that captures the essence of my brother’s physiognomy.

Line Drawing: Icon representing Mike

Mike Icon

I also developed a companion icon that represents me:

Line Drawing: Icon Representing Jack

Jack Icon

I am very happy with these icons. I feel as if I have finally succeeded, by some small measure, in emulating Paul Klee. I took the point of my pen ‘for a walk’ and captured an essential quality of the subjects I wanted to portray.

I have some good ideas about how to proceed from here, using my icons as building blocks.

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