Picasso, Braque, Susan, Suzanne, and the “Squirrel”

Painting Start by SE / Cornelis Edminster Collaboration

Our painting collaboration (Susan Cornelis and Suzanne Edminster)  is finding squirrels,  squawking bird things, skulls, and stubborn winged beings  in  our  paint .  Are they vermin or rare species?  Should they  be conserved or eliminated?  Here’s a wild start on a 24″ x 24″ canvas.  These starts are ephemeral: this one no longer exists, but has already changed.   Check the left corner.

Karina Nishi Marcus told me about Braque, Picasso, and the  Squirrel.  Picasso found a squirrel form in the middle of one of Braque’s paintings, and Braque struggled for 8 days trying to get rid of it.  I’ve included the story in a link below. It’s interesting that Picasso told Braque to kill it, get rid of it.  Braque’s squirrel was living in a painting of tobacco, pipes, cafe glasses.  Picasso said the squirrel didn’t belong there. On the other hand, Picasso, with his autocratic personality, might not have  ever allowed something to appear in his painting that he didn’t plan, sanction, or control.  

Our wild things emerge from splashes, spatters, and a short discussion of media and possible compositional forms.  Keep them and develop them?  Paint them out?  What about this fellow?

Detail, Upper Left Corner, "The Bird"

He absolutely hijacks the whole composition.  Paint him out in favor of more balance and harmony?  Here’s a detail of what we did to the painting.  The “squirrel”– the bird in the corner– is still there.

Detail, stages 2 and 3, of painting start Cornelis Edminster Collaboration

A lot of you are painters out there.  What do you think?  Thumbs up or thumbs down to the Bird Thing?

Mythic notes:  Read the full story of the Picasso, Braque and the squirrel .   These painting apparitions belong to either the world of projection and psychology, or the world of the dream.  Painting is dreaming out loud, lucid dreaming.  Change the dream?  Is it nonsense or an omen?  Do we let it pass like a cloud, and onto the next dream, or painting?  See more of our painting day from Susan Cornelis’ point of view.

Studio news:  Karina Nishi Marcus is having an opening at the Wine Emporium in Sebastopol this Friday.  Come and enjoy her masterful work. 

Artist’s reception for
Karina Nishi Marcus
Friday, February 10, 2012 from 5-8 pm at “The Wine Emporium.”125 N. Main St. · Sebastopol CA 95472
Phone: 707-823-5200 
 
http://www.the-wine-emporium.com/calendar/event?eventid=11995

Plan to meet the artist and enjoy excellent food, wine and music!The Wine Emporium is located at 125 North Main Street, in Sebastopol, a few doors North of Hwy. 12. Karina Nishi Marcus’ paintings can be seen on the sets of major motion pictures and TV shows including, Mad Men, NCIS, Parenthood, CSI: NY, Monk and House.

6 comments

  1. Thank you for the notification about my opening! I hope that it will be a celebratory occasion.

    And thank you for your research and the link about the connection of Picasso and Braque and the recalcitrant squirrel. I believe I first came across that squirrel story in the Françoise Gilot book “Life with Picasso” – an utterly fabulous and fascinating volume.

    I think there is a difference between the obvious, something ambiguous and obliviousness in imagery. I personally aim for the titter-trotter of interpretation.

    Like

    1. Hi my friend— the question of interpretation of realistic elements that arise in abstract forms is so interesting. In our Four Hands painting collaboration, the question is still open. Your own rich painting forms are so evocative and unfettered by specific signifiers. More work and play should reveal more about our approach to these squirrels. We are curious and open…

      Like

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