Conversation Pieces

David Manley Avatar
Fur Da Monk, Oil on Canvas, 101 x 76 cm., 2011

This series that I have been working on and off for about four or five years now have always been about the give and take between the two sides of the picture. Recently I picked a Philip Guston book off the shelf (actually one focussed on his drawing practice) and came across this quote that I though pretty perfectly summed up my own relationship to these paintings…   If I ever get around to exhibiting this work (tricky as some of these are pretty sizeable) I might use it to get across my thinking about this project…

“In an anecdote reported by the composer Morton Feldman, a close friend of the artist, Guston himself dreams up stories in front of his abstract works.  While they were looking at one of his paintings that shows ‘on a white ground, just two elongated black shapes about seven inches from each other…that one on the left [Guston] said…is telling the other one his troubles…’ ”

Baffling Drawings: Philip Guston, 1966 – 68, Isabelle Dervaux  in Philip Guston Works On Paper, ed. Schreier & Semff, Hatje Cantz, Ostfildern, 2007

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