February 10, 2010

I Hate Late Winter and I Hate Late Abstract Expressionism
Scene of a snow covered car with text: When I turned 35 I could say two things: I hate late winter and I hate late Abstract Expressionism.

Jeff Gates, From a Series of One Acts… #7, 1987. Click on image for larger view.

Before moving to the DC area I spent a year teaching art in Minnesota. I learned to drive in the snow that winter and am proud to have survived a week of -90F (-68C) windchill. But that pales by comparison to what the Mid Atlantic is going through right now (okay, what I’m going through right now). It’s a blizzard out there and believe it or not, I think this storm is worse than the snowpocalypse that inundated us this past weekend.

We’ve been off of work since Friday afternoon. As managing editor of our museum’s blog, Eye Level it’s my job to keep the blog posts on schedule. But, like everything DC, all activity has come to a standstill. So this morning I decided it was time for an art-related snow story. I did a search of our collection and found a beautiful image from Robert Singletary called Snow on the Chesapeake Bay and wrote a post on it. But in looking through the 196 search results for “snow,” I suddenly came upon the photograph above. I’d forgotten it was in American Art’s collection. And how appropriate for today. More importantly it still resonated for me.

I hate late winter. And, actually, after this season I think I’m on pretty solid ground when I say I just hate winter altogether. As for late Abstract Expressionism, the energy of its predecessor was no longer there. Like late winter it had lost its attraction.

I was young when I made that image. Thirty-five to be exact. So it’s nice to see I still feel strongly about the weather. Oh, and about my art too.

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