Tuesday, March 4, 2014


 Another recurring motif, the coral gardens, for those times that I wished to swim away from sturm und drang
and theology. The  coral gardens were (and are) for me a subaquatic paradise mercifully free of Jehovah
and his surly ways, a dominion (like the greenhouse) of Aphrodite's. Also an opportunity to populate the page with sea creatures, schools of fishes, pagodas of albino white or alizarine crimson--etc.  I trace
the motif back to my earliest childhood, when I  was convinced that I woke up under the sea.

I remember seeing the nightlight sink from view as the walls began to waver and the silvery fishes
flicker into existence as my crib  floated away.  There was the fear of the hammerhead shark
lying in wait down the watery corridor of our house on Perkins street, in Newton, Mass.,
the robed figures ascending and descending the stairway.  (This  may have been the traumatic result
of seeing Pinocchio, with its underwater scenes--I was also persuaded that the spoons and the dishes
held nightly dances on the sly, and that this was something the grown ups had willfully stonewalled
--but I digress)
the first two coral gardens are from 1996, the third from 1987; the theme re-appears in  paintings of mine as well, which will presently appear on these pages.

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