You all know the Shakespearian line, "nothing will come of nothing," right? A seemingly simple line really. "Nothing will come of nothing." Sure! This is King Lear's response to his loving daughter, Cordelia's refusal to voice her love for her father for the sake of topping her sisters' ridiculously competitive praises.
But in this first scene of the play, Lear is greatly mistaken in his math. This plot-driving miscalculation Shakespeare emphasises by a negation of status, reducing the old king to a Fool's fool. A great deal comes about from that first "nothing." A wake of human drama, disinheritance, deception and seduction, greed and revenge, madness, and death lies within those pages as proof. So, "nothing will come of nothing" has an alchemical
esotery to it.
To me, this makes a fine analogy for the tradition of painting. In painting you have a canvas, or panel, or whatever surface you are working with… the side of a beached whale, whatever it might be. From the point of visual intrigue or physiology, nothing. Then the painter takes his pigments and their respective vehicles, his tools, his brushes, and through a process of eye to hand prowess he covers that surface. But again, physiologically, spiritually speaking, the painter has only covered nothing with nothing. And this, my friends, is where I introduce my attitude toward aesthetics and craftsmanship. I've watched painters haphazardly spill their paints, splatter them around, make great messes, and ... Read More