I have been working since May on work for my new show UTOPIA, which opens tomorrow in Oakland. I wanted to have a show of landscape paintings that worked as a cohesive entity, as opposed to a group of random pictures. Time has been in short supply this summer and I needed to work on the show close to home. Luckily, I happen to live a 30 minute drive from what to me is the most beautiful and serene place on earth.
Limantour Beach, a part of the Point Reyes National Seashore, is protected from development by law, and protected from the crowds by a winding and obscure access road. It is a unique ecosystem and a challenging place to paint with winds, tides, light and fog in constant flux.
I tried to go there every day for 30 days. ( I must confess that I missed a few days due to other deadlines). Worikng around my illustration assignments, I went usually very early in the morning or late in the aftternoon when the wind dies enough to keep sand out of the painting. I did over 40 pieces, 16 were keepers and are in the show.
All but two of these pieces were painted in the last week of May through June 25, 2014. All were painted on location. Each painting is an artifact that represents a struggle between my ambition for the piece, the limitations of my own skill, and the meteorological conditions on any given day.
The more one looks at a specific place, the more one can see the beauty and complexity in the simplest things. One could spend one's entire life working on this spit of tidal land, trying to capture a fraction of the beauty and understated grandeur of Utopia.