“The process of making a painting is very like the evolution of a landscape with layers built up, scratched into, worked on top of, then stripped away, erased, and then built on again, while still revealing traces of the former surface.”

Thursday, 10 November 2016 13:54

Power and Control

The Goldfinch by Fabritius is in Edinburgh at the moment.



 I first saw it as a poor reproduction in the school library - (remember those?).

 Struggling then, as now, with the fact that the drawing on the paper never quite matched the image in my head - it just seemed beautiful, unattainable - but the wee chain on the bird’s leg, niggled.

 I’ve seen it in reality since, in Holland and in New York, and it’s stunning - but that wee chain still disturbs.

 I’ve now seen it again, and it’s taken on a sadness which I can’t shake off.

Like me, you might be angry/ saddened/ frightened, by the result of the election in the U.S. - and maybe this wasn’t the day to go and see this painting again - but in that context, what was in my head was - ‘ I can keep you in check, and I will’ - Power and Control - and maybe Hadley Freeman’s article added to that feeling - but read it and see what you think about that wee chain.