22 Aug 20 by justatest
In Florence I treated myself to a beautifully handmade, bound, hardback drawing book of the finest paper. It was such an exquisite piece of work, I couldn't bring myself to ruin it by drawing on it.
It remained untouched in the studio for months until one day I took a saw to it, cut it up, and over time covered it with layers of gesso and oilpaint.
Typical male aggression, though I was relieved and quite pleased with the result.
To me, it looks like the scene of a crime. I'm sure any Florentine bookbinder would agree.
The balcony of the apartment I rented was full of dead plants. Some months had passed before I ventured out to investigate. I couldn't do much about the vegetation but there was an old rolled up water hose that looked very interesting. I took it, sealed in in calico and glue, gave it a layer or two of gesso, then painted it purple. I suppose I'd call this a found object.
Then what's all this about contemporary art being so difficult? - it's easier than watering the plants.
It's well known that italians love their cars. However it's not only the fast sporty machines like Ferrari, Maserati or Alfa Romeo they are passionate about, they also have a love affair with the dinky little Fiat 500.
It was with this in mind that I understood the often repeated image on the Italian news of a Serbian tank crushing the little Italian-made car in a Bosnian town, during the war in ex-Yugoslavia.
It had more effect to elicit the indignance of the nation than if it were instead a Bosnian Muslim man being crushed.
So I thought I'd make a beat up car front headlights and grille - as my tribute to all people and things that get in the way of tanks.
Watching the horror of the Uganda genocide, half-bodies being hauled out of the lake. One was just the legs and pelvis. I wanted to make the rest to somehow re-unite the mutilation. I could only manage this torso.