Today, I display the second of the ‘Pink’ series. Yesterday I explained that Willem de Kooning’s work, Pink Angels, inspired me. This painting was a mix of pink body parts strewn on a mustard-yellow background. The pink shapes that I used were also body parts, but instead of being the violently torn-apart appendages of women, mine were parts of my brother Michael. Mike is my older brother who is very low functioning, autistic and nonverbal. I spent a good deal of my life (and the first year of this blog documenting my efforts) trying to figure out what our relationship was.
When I was photographing Mike, I used techniques I learned from many different photographers to capture his image in different ways. I learned a lot about him and myself from those pictures. I am trying to do the same thing by looking through the lens of different painters’ eyes. I am now realizing that biographical information is important to consider when looking at the paintings of these artists. It gives one a better appreciation of the environment within which visual masterpieces were created.