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Painting in the time of Covid

I have been painting for the past two months, but it doesn't seem the same. It's odd actually, because my life hasn't changed that much, but so much has changed. Painting is a solitary pursuit, so it isn't like I miss the company, but I miss the company of others, other than my husband and furry companions. Because our house is remote, we spent the first month primarily alone, save the occasional trip to the store for more perishable groceries. It snowed and we enjoyed being outdoors. The snow melted and flowers started blooming and we enjoy longer times outdoors now. It is a blessing, but we are still isolated. I miss our weekends with a house full of people that allow no time for me to spend in the studio. I miss the excitement of new guests and eagerly await a time when we can have them once again. In the meantime, I bake (bread, which is not a new endeavor for me, but I applaud all of those taking up the hobby), I enjoy the outdoors, and I paint.

I am still painting First Citizens; their struggles with Covid-19 are troubling. Their infection rates are exponentially higher on the reservations than the rest of America and I fear, as they do, for their survival. The above, a 36"x36" oil on canvas is from Curtis' 1904 Vanishing Race, The Navajo. It seems even more appropriate now than when I started it a few months ago.

I continue painting (in oil pastels) more masks from Curtis photographs. As I studied masks more over the past semester, I am even more drawn to them. Not sure where this will lead yet. I am really enjoying the use of the oil pastels and I plan to continue using them. I now understand why Picasso wanted them.

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