Sunday, February 24, 2008

Self-Portraits from a Cold Barn

I've recently posted pictures of flowers and hummingbirds to bring about thoughts of Spring, but the fact is it's still damn cold and winter here in Maine. (My old friend Carlo Pittore used to sing, There are only two seasons in Maine - WINTER! and the Fourth of July!)
The barn that housed my studio burned down in 2002, but before that event I spent many a cold winter day working out there. The fire in my small woodstove helped, but I had to wear lots of layers to stay warm while I worked. Here are a few self-portraits that were created during the cold months. Hence, the hats and heavy coats...

Cold Snap Self, 2002
pastel and charcoal on Rives BFK, 22" x 30". For Sale.

Birthday Self,
pastel and colored pencil on Rives BFK, 22" x 30". For Sale.

Late Winter Self, 1990
pastel and charcoal on Rives BFK, 22" x 30". Lost in barn fire.

Self/Early March, 1989
pastel and charcoal on Rives BFK, 22" x 30". Lost in barn fire.


Don Gray said...

Speaking of self-portraits! Martha, your work is wonderful--deeply expressive, fearless and passionate. Thanks for your comments on my blog, I emailed your sister as soon as I saw her application for Daily Painters, to tell her how glad I was she applied. The group needs more artists of her caliber.

Also, so sorry to read of your studio burning in 2002--what a loss! Wishing you many happy and productive days of creating.

Martha Miller said...

Hi Don

Thanks for posting! Yes, the Daily Painters needs more artists like you and Susan. Kudos to you both for keeping up with that challenging discipline! Isn't it interesting that we all connected over self-portraiture? (you saw hers and commented, and I noticed yours...) I had a painting teacher once say that she believes that no self-portraits are ever interesting. She considers them "masturbation."

Needless to say, I disagree!!!

About my studio, it was a terrific loss, but it was also a welcome clean slate. It really brought home the "process not product concept!" I found this poem by Masahide after it happened:

Barn's burnt down, now I can see the Moon.

Happy creating to you as well!