jack’s redneck


Here it is sunset over the studio orderly, the floor scrubbed and the traces of the weekend’s wilding all ready for the trash-man. It really is a nice place if you keep up to the chores and the chitchat to the minimum. I forget. Workplace with a warm fire and art on the walls and steady low hip-hop can be tempting for shiftless types. Everything traipsed into my life that way over the last fifteen years. Music shuffle is real fine right now, that middle eastern stuff. Very calm right now. Need to get rid of a little clutter for at the far end of the room. Otherwise the low light hides a multitude of sins.

Busy Bergman day, the wild bright cold and the half mad people by their various fires. Various fires. Is it Bergmen or Bergman? Isit Ingrid or Ingmar? Alzheimar? Couldn’t get over the middle aged Bergman quality, all the ice and tears and twitching neuroses and endearing bravado. It got so bad I took to staring off into space and delivering monologues on death and memory right in front of people… and I think I got away with it. They don’t get much good live theater around here.

And me painting beach chairs…. The thing goes slowly, the drawing’s complicated, folding chair mechanisms and turquoise water. Coarsely indicated, but everything exactly in place. I’m taking respite from winter in the paint color…though the blue and white of the glaring frozen days here go into the pool I suppose. Writing to you helps me to focus on the machine and the paintings, calms me to work. And work here mostly involves organizing time and materials into little periods of as high performance as I can muster. I set my self a technical challenge and try to solve it without resorting to formula too much. Right now the surface of a swimming pool, a used clutter of empty lounge chairs, end of the day. Mildly post-orgiastic. I toss in risk and experiment and mistake, a little chaos theory. The tensions of the day coach the handwriting, the ripples. I try to give due attention to faces that pass through the room. Blather. An odd life but if you keep up with the chores and faithlessness at bay it has centrality. The animals are sane and practical company. Ain’t afraid to touch and they learn fast not to hover while I paint.

Painting picks up but it’s too slow still. I’m reworking some things I felt unfinished. Two new things begun. Memories come out of nowhere when I wet the brush. I relive this morning, I relive a restaurant conversation from ten years ago. Hopes flare up too now. I keep to myself as much as possible, thinking, reading, feel like I’m being programmed for a task when I nap between bouts. I feed the fire at the cat’s urging sometimes; she spirals on a cocked hip at the dim edges of my absorption. Then she starts screaming. Company when it comes is very good but I feel like I’m standing in alien corn most of the time. I’m all cognitive dissonance and full of secrets. All part of studio life and its narrow focus. Whole different set of rules.

It’s very late night. I just stepped out for firewood. It isn’t so cold now but the Blizzard they promised on the news has begun. I’m nice and snug. Took a little while to get used to being alone but if you can’t handle being alone you’re in trouble. I like it now. Even when you find your company it’s wise to keep your chops.
You be careful if you’re on the roads.


~ by Rocky Green on February 14, 2007.

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