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Occasional Rain, atmospheric paint-gland

Occasional Rain, acrylic on canvas, 5ft x 4ft

Settling into a new work space meant a few old canvases got pulled from the racks to go back under the knife and brush. Occasional Rain is a re-working of Dragstrip Courage, a piece which pulled on threads I am still tugging on today. Courage, painted in the 2000s, was inspired by an old abandoned dragstrip located outside of Tallahassee on Highway 20 headed west. Buried in the atmosphere and paint I placed a cut away view of a V-8 engine. The title came from a lyric in Tom Waits’ song, Goin’ Out West.

Dragstrip Courage, acrylic on canvas, 5ft x 4ft

I was stenciling and projecting patterns from more lace and cloth, combining these with images, aiming for not much more than something interesting to look at. I had been playing with a patterned organza on smaller pieces when Dragstrip Courage showed itself as I flipped through old work. It happened to match, in size, the pattern I was working from. I had no idea what would come of it, but I knew it needed doing.

Organza as stencil, black spray paint on butcher paper

The act of painting took over and Occasional Rain came out the other side. It felt different from being an image or portrayal, leaning towards poetry on prosaic feet. Being honest, this piece owes a great deal to The War on Drugs, a band that has hit my ambient-groove-atmospheric paint gland in all the feels. The title comes from their last album, I Don't Live Here Anymore, last song, Occasional Rain.

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