Sally Porter's Web Log
Porter’s Meta Expressionism & Rothko’s Desire for Tears  
Friday, February 5, 2010, 08:51 PM - General
Mark Rothko, one of the great abstract expressionists, desired people to break down and cry before his paintings. He stated, ”The people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when I painted them. And if you, as you say, are moved only by their color relationship, then you miss the point.” Every successful painting makes a spiritual connection with the viewer. The spiritual component of the connection is instantaneous and defies logical analysis. It’s a feeling of understanding and prior knowledge, either completely satisfying or igniting an inner quest, enriching one’s existence.

Rothko’s development as a painter took him on a trip from figuration, as in Entrance to Subway, 1938, through a brush with mythmaking, into Surrealism, and eventually to his color paintings of pure emotion, exploiting the vagaries of humanity such as “tragedy, ecstasy, and doom”. My paintings also engage on a spiritual level with an awareness of color and pattern. Meta expressionist paintings explore conceptual ideas and deliberate actions of mark making (will), as well as the spiritual components of freedom and emotion. The exposition of pattern is becoming more pronounced in my work. Just as Rothko discovered color as a means to spirituality, pattern itself is another path.

Painting the darker and passionate side of being as Rothko chose to do is only one of an infinite number of choices to forge the spiritual connection with the viewer. Optimism and intellectualism are but two others. Meta expressionism explores the inner chasm of reality, enabling the paintings to appropriate buried messages from within the artist, and open the possibility of communicating them to the viewer.

Every person is ultimately spirit, naturally drawn to the artists whose work either merely touches or completely envelopes their own field of knowledge and experience, inclusive of emotion.

Sally Porter

Sally Porter Gallery
www.sallyportergallery.com

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