I am thinking back to painting studio class. I remember when, for me, the background became more important than the figure, when a sense of movement became my focus and the real story. Then it was about painting, not the requisite sitter or subject. In class, I had started on a different path, one that comes from inside. It has a rhythm and energy that tops all observable reality.
Of the phrase, In art you will find yourself, there is real truth in this and that quest keeps on. So you continue. Its not about the finished product although there is a certain satisfaction in that viewing. It is about the work and the search.
And in that search you need a place to work where things do not intrude. You pay for studio space you get the isolation. But you can get other things.
I remember the Montreal studio about 1980. So hot in the middle of the winter, you could have all the windows open and the heat still radiated down from dusty old pipes running along the ceiling. But it was big. And there I could do big paintings and I did. Cutting off large lengths of canvas and stapling them to the studio wall- these white shapes became windows to this other world and I filled them up. Then I sat and looked. That space was where the l980s began and when the shows started.
Now there is the studio on Prince Edward Island. Every year I spend several months there and it is in that space where I feel most productive. And on the ground, in the air the sense of space rolls out, clearing distractions. It is that environment which informs all of my work.