07 January 2012

Wander This World

WTW: 16" x 12" watercolor on Arches 2012
To view enlarged, right click image to open in a new tab.
 Rewind to 2010.  One day we will look back on that year and wish we were still so free and easy.  Meanwhile, this memory came from a panorama of digitals taken while waiting for the tow to pick us up, me and the rock-buggy. It was, as you can figure out, a very long wait since they were coming from a faraway town veering into the empty, meandering desert, aka, the middle of nowhere.  But there was a lot of ground to cover, strange vibes, the bizarro oxymoron of a huge cattle corral next to the tracks leading to a decrepit slaughterhouse in the heart of the Central Valley, aka Breadbasket of the World.  You might have seen some of the photos from that trip, I was calling it Breakdown in the Badlands back then.
In reality, this is another part of a decade long series that begins with Transmontane, We Come with the Dust and Go with the Wind, All Things Must Pass and includes Hell for Bad Cows, Oranges Everywhere and many more. And yes, there really are many more to come because the one thing that keeps me in this state filled with self-proclaimed fruits and nuts is the scenery, ancient because it became what it is today before we were even a thought in our parents' child minds. What it was - is not what it is - anymore, but there are still  plenty of parts around the 'hood where distant night drums carry spirits.  I wonder what those spirits are feeling when they see what the white man has wrought?  Rather than presume what spirits feel, feeling what we really feel is being open to receiving the spirits' messages.  It is an ominous beat with an uplifting bridge.

When the jeep started a little rattle under the hood, I was told I'd thrown a rod and was especially irritated because I would not be able to finish listening to Johnny Lang's, a rockin', then 17 year-old Minnesota bluesman's CD: Wander This World.  A full year and a half later, I hear it all the time and love it still.  Genius with heart.

... I'm like a ghost some people can't see
Others drive by and stare
A shadow that drifts by the side of the road
It's like I'm not even there

And I'll wander this world, wander this world
Wander this world, wander this world all alone

Well I've never been part of the game
The life that I live is my own
All that I know is that I was born
To wander this world all alone, all alone ...


LifeinCreation said...

Lovely painting nina. I remember well that golden color. To me it's the true meaning of "the Golden State.'

nina said...

Thank you for your comment Life. The golden hue is, believe it or not, not originally Californian. Its the Cheat Grass which has taken over, an introduced species. There was a time long ago this state was green year round. And its the Cheat Grass which dries the fastest and is the cause of the worst brush fires which quickly become wildland super fires.

Cheat Grass 1
Cheat Grass 2

chickory said...

man oh man you are a very good painter. i clicked over on hell for cows and my heart jumped a bit. that you would choose to paint that and have the composition be so ominous and oppressive yet the painting remains lovely -thats skill.

I just finished a 3 month siege of cram schooling trying to make money and just turned in the last of the projects friday. now i can coast a little and get around to see all i missed. Ive looked at all the paintings -and will comment along in the days to come.

Anon said...

Excellent painting.

- Aangirfan

Anonymous said...

Pastures of Plenty from dry desert ground. Woody Guthrie. Love it Nina. Your paintings always inspire. I always regret leaving California. I will return I know because I think of all that I saw many years ago. Seeing those dry desrt hills just make me crazy. Stumble around like a desert rat. Love you and of course the painting too. All of them.


nina said...

Your comments are so interesting, I've wanted to do this one for a long time and had a blast doing it and yet, I was urged not to as if there was no story there. But I can see you all hear the story I do just as well.
And Scrap, your mention of Woody is perfect, he's the influencer of the influencers who shaped each one of us commenting, painting, writing, dancing, all who so deeply sense the wrong that could have so easily been right.

Thank you Chickory, Aang, Scrap, Life, thank you all for your visits and your vision.

nina said...

By the way, neil's poem, see right sidebar, suits this entry perfectly, doesn't it?

Great minds think alike coincidence, interesting timing too because these things are not done in a day.