I got an email from a former artist-friend with whom I have lost contact. I always enjoyed Susanne’s work. She is thinking of relocating…to a place more responsive to her contemporary, painterly work. Image   by Susanne Carmack

How did I enjoy Naples, she wondered. I visited her website and her work has only gotten better!

I really didn’t know Susanne that well.  We didnt live or work near each other and only saw each other typically once a year when both of our work was represented at an annual invitational Show.  Whenever we did see each other we were both struck by a mutual sensibility.  Many of the same matters concerned us both.  I think we both enjoyed knowing that….kind of like SHARING A SECRET. Imageby Susanne Carmack

Susanne Carmack….Check her out.  She is a special person and a magnificent painter. I was so happy to hear from her!

Susanne has a blog.  I came upon this clip below.  I, too, am very taken by Cy Twombly and the essence and importance of “the mark.” All of us have our own mark…our own signature. As an artist, the hope is to find it, trust, and nurture it.  Below are Susanne’s comments about Twombly.  The book pictured below is always on a bench in my living room.

The Cy Twombly Influence

My work has been influenced by the painting of Cy Twombly. My teacher in graduate school, Anne Truitt, used to say that all the artists throughout time stand shoulder to shoulder. I came to understand that an influence allows you to build on your own work without having to view everything as new terrain. Twombly forged the path for painters who use mark making and writing to express their ideas. My work is often episodic, each mark being a separate action that is punctuating a field. Marks are strewn across a ground which is sometimes atmospheric, and the marks are separate events that register changes in “feeling”. Twombly described his work as deriving from the nervous system and I believe that is so. He was a rogue and he stuck to his vision.Image And let me go a bit further in my analysis. Though Twombly spent many years in Rome, and spoke of ancient subject matter, I think his vision is utterly American. The wide open spaces speak of an American sensibility rooted in land, he forged new territory, and I am reminded of the music of Aaron Copeland. There are ancient references, but new frontiers. So American.” IMG_4799

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