We cannot do great things on this earth. We can only do small things with great love. – Mother Teresa
Portrait by Gary Hume, Screenprint, 1998
Pink Orchid by Gary Hume, gloss paint on aluminium , 1999
I still remember having to sit down to weep the first time I walked through the MOMA, because I was able to see so many of the works that, until then, I had only seen in books. Working in relative isolation has its benefits no doubt, but whenever I do the Grand Tour I spend as much time in museums and galleries as my lower back –or husband– can take. (Looking up at enough big art can hurt!) I still have a long list of artists whose work I would love to see first hand. Gary Hume is one of these. This is an age of so much cold, conceptual, “ironic” sameness, the culture highpoint of which includes paintings made from bodily fluids and poop. (My mother proudly announced to the world in the comment book at my first solo show that I was doing this long before Chris Ofili. She enthusiastically recollected how I stood in the crib and –in a sweeping gesture– wiped my diaper over the wall: “It was so dramatic. I was quite moved. I knew you were meant to be an artist then and there. ” Hindsight and a mother’s love are wonderful things. But I digress… where was I? Oh yes….) Gary Hume’s paintings are a thing of genuine beauty. More than decorative, there is a sensitivity to material, a spirit, and an integrity in his work. Also, an openess and freedom I adore.
This may be a bit of a stretch for my first Illustration Friday post, but if there is karma to be found, it would be that shortly after I painted it I became very pear shaped myself. Pears in Karmic Space was my last oil painting completed before becoming pregnant with Conor, and for the sake of his health I have started working with egg tempera. This image is borrowed from the Christina Parker Gallery. I hope to have a better scan soon with more detail for my upcoming online gallery.