There I was, standing in front of this beautiful, tender, poignant painting, unable to stop weeping.
The strange pattern of forms that now obsessed me implied a resolution of that split in consciousness between St. Ursula’s and Caravaggio’s portrait…
Stretch, a moment, a hide taut between threads and wind the threads around a wooden frame. Stitch this skin, recently nestled over sinew and muscle and organ and bone…
I have been painting portraits from obituaries on poured plaster/acrylic plaques since the pandemic began.
While googling ‘how to fertilize tree peonies and will they grow in the shade’ I for a minute linger on the Washington Post main page and get enough in two seconds to know the world is bad.
You experience the light through cumulus night clouds that gather then disperse within minutes, light ricocheting in groves of trees.
This is a portrait of a culture in the late stages of psychic rot.
I felt the awkward little girl in me stirring, a sense of vulnerability recognized and transformed into a different kind of power by this painting.
Their separate egos are hereby erased when the two saints conjoin in an embrace, which echoes the cave behind them, a cosmic hug of sorts, clinching the final humanistic coda of this panel.