DRAWING LIFE by fred hatt

2009/03/21

13 Ways: Wallace Stevens

Filed under: Abstract Art,Homage: Writers,Poetry — Tags: , , , — fred @ 22:07

In 1982 I had graduated from college with a filmmaking degree and had just gotten married, but I was really still looking for myself.  That year I had one of my early bursts of artistic effort, directed at painting.  I made this series illustrating Wallace Stevens’ popular bit of American Zen, “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”, published in 1917.  These are all acrylic on paper, 24″ x 18″ (61 cm x 46 cm).  I think the verses are legible in these pictures, but if not, see the full text in its Wikipedia entry, a good introduction to this poem, including links to interpretations by other artists and composers.

Blackbird I, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird I, 1982, by Fred Hatt

 
Blackbird II, 1982, by Fred HattBlackbird II, 1982, by Fred Hatt
Blackbird III, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird III, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird IV, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird IV, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird V, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird V, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VI, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VI, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VIII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird VIII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird IX, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird IX, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird X, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird X, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XI, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XI, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XIII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

Blackbird XIII, 1982, by Fred Hatt

This series is not much like my current work, but I see in it an attempt to find an approach to visual art that’s analagous to music.  The touch is a bit heavy, but also vigorous and bold.  If you take time to look at them, you’ll see, not just hidden blackbirds, but lots of evocative and suggestive forms nested in these compositions.

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