Wednesday, June 11, 2008
In channeling the cosmic zeitgeist into my paintings lately, they've all become zombie portraits (including the above, of Marlene Dietrich and Anna May Wong from SHANGHAI EXPRESS).
I've been working from film stills in an attempt to capture the idea of the "dissolving of memory" - how with movies you remember key scenes and then you see the movie years later and the scene turns out to be completely different! It's about seeing a young beautiful actress, then watching the making of documentary and seeing the withered stalk she's become... the hair and teeth gone, replaced by wig and dentures, the flesh decaying... the voice gone gravelly as she lurches forward to rend your living flesh and devour you screaming... until you too are aged and cannibalistic... meanwhile, the young image stays forever glowing on the silver screen....MOCKING YOU!
It's also about me being older and having written on film for long enough that I go back and reread some of my recollections on films I've seen and realize that even my memories of certain film scenes change over time... whoa!