Friday, January 25, 2008

About art

I hung the painting by Reuben Becker last night. It's the one of the tree on the upper left in the photo above. Becker was one of the unique people who lived in solitude on Smith Island. He was married for a while, has a daughter and a son, came out "of the closet" , became known for his paintings about Smith Island and Chesapeake Bay, and died coming down the steps of his loft in his old house at Ewell.

His partner, Hoss Parker, brought some oysters over for me to roast and asked us to come over to his house to see Reuben's paintings. The studio has been preserved just as it was. Hoss has sold a few paintings in order to live. I bought two of them. One is a sketch of a lighthouse and the other is the tree scape above. Hoss makes all the frames from old pieces of lathing taken from falling down houses on the island. He sells them too cheaply and acknowledges that. But I guess that the economy there isn't good, especially since crabs and oysters have been declining for years.

Meeting Hoss, seeing the studio, and all the artwork in Reuben's house was really neat. I have quite a bit of art. It seems that art and books are those things that I look for when I go into someone's home. Something seems to be missing when there aren't either. I know not to judge but it seems as if a home without these items seems too bare and without much soul.

I want to get back into painting again when I retire. At the moment, I exercise my love of art through collecting and through photography. I drag my camera with me wherever I go. It may not capture all that my eye sees but it definitely provides a lot of enjoyment by helping me remember those special people and places that I encounter. I like what Tolle says about true artists. I don't know whether I am that or not but do know that when I'm painting or messing with photography, I am absorbed and content. Here's hoping that you have a weekend of inner stillness.

"All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness." Eckhart Tolle


  1. Hi Syd,

    Hmmmm, - by the way - loved this blog - very very interesting. Glad that I love books and art, too, perhaps not to the extent that you do, but enough for my space. I just want to comment on the beautiful photograph at the top of your message - - - this photo itself, when I first saw it, appealed to me as a decoupage of collective art in someone's home (yours, maybe?). That picture is quite beautiful with all the pictures in it. Thanks for sharing your dreams.
    Love, Anonymous #1

  2. why not get into painting before you retire? :)

  3. why not get into painting before you retire? :)

  4. Love the paintings. Who is the big on sitting? It seems like he is engaged in the centering prayer or maybe that's just me, seeing my life in everything. Glad you had a nice vacation.....Happy weekend.

  5. i have a sneaky suspition that you'd be a good artist, looking at the photos you post...

  6. Hi, I am Reuben's daughter and glad you enjoy his work I have enjoyed them for years, thanks for sharing!!!


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