Artists: Build your Genealogical Tree

Two years ago I got really sick & couldn’t paint large canvases for quite a few months. The lack of mobility & energy began to chip away at my soul. I felt I was building up creative energy that I couldnt release as I spent most days resting, mulling over ideas of what I’d paint when I finally had the energy. But I couldn’t physically do anything with that built up energy. During my time on the couch, I stumbled across this @vogueliving feature of @kellywearstler and had to exercise thru what I was processing; I was so inspired. These colors together spoke to me in a way nothing else had in a long time & I knew immediately I had found another ingredient to my artist practice: my color palette. With all the energy I could muster, I went to the art store and bought new paints & paper to be able create a couch-friendly painting station at home to work small-scale on paper. I first exercised thru creating these 4 works on paper that are similar in aesthetic movement + color to Kelly’s patterns. Although deconstructed, her influence is clear. I call these 4 my ‘Whimsical’ Series. All of the works I made after these 4 have added or supplemented to this color palette & look nothing like Kelly’s patterns. I began to use the color palette as a staple to enter dialogue with other influences in my genealogical art tree like Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman & Antoni Tapiés to name a few. Why am I sharing this? Because NOTHING is original. You’re kidding yourself if you think your work is. Everything builds from something else; whether you are consciously aware or not. Are you acute enough to realize when something is worth being added to your genealogical tree? Do you have the persistence to work thru it to better understand it? To interpret it & collage it with your wheelhouse until it’s a piece of you? Do you have the interest to study your inspirations further + learn what inspired them? THIS is the work that is necessary outside of the physical artist practice to build as a “full” artist. You are not just the product you make. Insert yourself into your own historiography. & give credit where it is due. #kellywearstler