art and language: part I

I have been thinking recently about the way that artists think about art. Specifically, I am wondering do we think in pictures?

This question seems a bit naive or simplistic at first glance. However, if we could get to the heart of this question, then we might be able to better understand artists, art making, and why it is so difficult to discuss art.

Personally, I wonder if my own process starts with language then moves to images. I think that might be difficult to answer simply but I will try. Its hard to answer this question because while I am in the art making process I am not thinking rationally. What do I mean by that? Well let me start with how I work with language.

In writing, for example like writing a paper or a blog entry, I have an idea and I can choose to express it one of a few ways. I can make an outline, craft arguments, make sure that paragraphs are coherent, and that it all supports my main claim. Alternatively,  if I am writing something more free I can have an idea and chip away at it with language until what emerges seems to match the original idea or feeling.

With my oil paintings there is a very different process…

{to be continued – after a mindful day in the studio I will return to this question}


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