Bob Thompson. continued.


How did I come by these small paintings ? Bob and Carol were heading back to NY City. They could only afford one ticket. Bob wanted to go first but Carol said” No way” she feared he would forget her and she had a point. The plan was one goes back and sends the other a ticket. Carol went and Bob roamed around the Island chasing the girls.

I had a farm out near Santa Eulalia. After a couple of months another farm had became available.  They moved in and they bought a donkey, he loved donkeys and horses. I think he had grown up around them in Kentucky. Bob had done a lot of work. He finally got his ticket and took off with no thought of arranging for his work to be taken care of. I was leaving the island to as our son was born and we had run out of money. I went to their farm unstretched his work, about ten pieces  rolled them and put them in a crate I had had an Island guy build. It was huge and had to be lifted by crane onto the boat. We left from Valencia. My father in-law had a loft on fourteenth so I stored them there until I found a space. I dragged Bobs work around for about six months or more,. Finally he was going to Provincetown for a show and he finally came in a huge pink Cadillac, weird. He opened the trunk and tried to put the work in , it would not fit so he folded the roll and squeezed it in,I cringed. This all happened outside a loft I had on Pitt St on the lower East Side. He gave me one large painting about 48 x 38 from his Goya Period. He also handed me a small box with the small works I am showing here.  and thanked me for saving his work. The farmer would have probably found a use for them but not on his walls……………………..continued.

Memories of Bob Thompson.

I first met Bob Thompson in Provincetown Mass along with Gandy Brodie, Red Grooms, Bob Beauchamp and Emilio Cruz. It was a very special time for me as a painter. We where all about the same age and looking for a new approach to painting. We wanted to reintroduce the figure. Most artists at that time in Provincetown where abstract painters and it was becoming just liberally sloshing paint around.

Bob Thompson stood out to me. I went to Europe in 1961. I was in Italy looking for a friend only to find out he had gone to Ibiza as it was cheaper. Cheap was what lured artists. I went to Ibiza and wee found him and his wife in Santa Eulalia. In the town of Ibiza we sat outside a cafe contemplating our next move, when along came Bob Thompson and his wife Carol. The had been there a month coming from Paris. Here is a work by Bob derived from Goya’s  Caprices of war…………To be continued


Looking back.

Looking back. Back in 1964 when I lived in lower Manhattan I dreamed of making a huge shoe sculpture for some City park or plaza. It never came about. Womens shoes can become very sculptural.  I think in todays art world it is great that artists like Jeff Koons can just send something off to a manufacturer and have it riplicated to their specifications. They have introduced the idea that any object made gigantic is interesting, and it so often is. Oldenburg did it with his cloths pin in Philadelphia. It is beautiful. But the expence! There lays the rub.18 Untitled, 12 x 9, G2, ID 1351I

” Two sides of the coin “

DSCF3217Been working on two paintings side by side for over a year now. Finally they came together in an odd way.

There are a lot of format painters around. It constantly puzzles me how they keep producing the same theme. It could be that they produce what is salable. Take Alex Katz. We know him for his portraits of his wife. You know a Katz when you see it. Paul Resika, beautiful paintings of still lives harbor scenes and models, you know a a Resika when you see it. Now this does not mean they are bad painters just that I wonder how they do not become curios about different aspects of life the way Picasso, Goya and deKooning dug into different moods and feelings of life.

One of these paintings seems to catch me in a pleasant mood. The other is a more anxious mood. There are times I wonder why at 82 painting does not just become easier, it doesn’t , it gets tougher. This I feel is because if you put everything into it and do not become repetitive your work will  find something new and that something new has to be applied to the next effort only to realize you have not reached the end of discovery but the begining of a new way of seeing and feeling.DSCF3218