Monday, December 19, 2011


Déjà vu accurately describes my life. Missouri, Montana, New Mexico. Missouri, Montana, New Mexico. It is the circle of life I relive every couple years – until now. There is a new plan. However, don’t get too excited for the new plan is the same as the old ones.

“I’m done moving I tell people, the kids are bigger and have school friends.” Of course, everyone knows it to be a lie; but they are polite enough to pat me on the back and feign belief while I am in the room. It helps me and certainly helps my family to have a hopeful outlook free of the burden of packing boxes and broken friendships.

Winter and snow have made the desire to transition easier to contain. The hard season of midwinter is what draws me to the north. I’m not sure if it has more to do with my surname or simply my desire for that feeling winter brings to wiping the slate clean. This week, New Mexico is trying its damnedest to keep me here and despite the inconvenience, I am grateful for the perfect white. There are already two inches of snow across the foothills of Sandia and the forecast through tonight is expecting another half-dozen.

Without even a mention of fire, the studio is still warm as I prepare to slip a few more layers of paint upon canvas before my children are released for winter break. The flawless white is freshly falling and for the moment I am home.


Friday, November 04, 2011

Opening November 4, 2011

The top framed drawing is a Sol Lewitt, the bottom enamel on an easel is mine.

Opening tonight from 5-8pm at Palette Contemporary in Albuquerque, New Mexico. - North

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

More is coming, busy living to the fullest...

I wanna see what's never been seen,
I wanna live that age old dream.
Come on, lads, we can go together
Let's take the best right now,
Take the best right now.
-Neil Young

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Summer of Fire

This summer, the fires surrounding Los Alamos glowed across the miles as I witnessed the desert’s death and rebirth through my studio window. Man and the universe are intertwined. Humanity is the best that life has to offer and like the universe, our capacity to exist is forever expanding. Only our fear can contain the scope of creation. - North

Wednesday, August 03, 2011


I spent the morning listening to La Bohème, while my thirteen-year-old finished reading The Iliad. I have long loved opera because it is all consuming. Also, I must admit that I have always been partial to how Puccini plays toward my romanticized sense of the world. -North

Monday, July 11, 2011


I’ve spent the past few weeks: reminiscing with house guests from far-flung states; recovering from an annoying case of strep that interrupted my nightly pipe ritual; and exploring the self-imposed philosophical basis of my paintings. I have also been searching for a justification of continuing. My earliest mentor, Ronald Clayton, used to ask… “why does the world need another painting?” The moment you could not answer was the moment to reevaluate your own essence.

"And, irrespective of what one might assume, in the life of a science, problems do not arise by themselves. It is precisely this that marks out a problem as being of the true scientific spirit: all knowledge is in response to a question. If there were no question, there would be no scientific knowledge. Nothing proceeds from itself. Nothing is given. All is constructed." - Gaston Bachelard (La formation de l'esprit scientifique, 1934)

I have long reflected my work against the backdrop of redefining “what is common or accepted knowledge? and does that preclude change” … the shared generalization of a tree is just a tree because we have been told it is a tree. Rocks are only rocks because we inherited the knowledge and built ideas from that point forward. Constructivism leads my painting as a relative working theory. I want to adapt the rocks, trees and empty riverbeds from the accepted realist understanding and reinvigorate them as fresh malleable matter. A common statement that tends to reflect a bias against originality is “why reinvent the wheel?” My reply is that we do not reinvent the wheel to make it better or worse, but simply we do it to make it unique. The world is full of monotypes. Not all streams flow between the same hills, yet they still feed water. - North

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Fire by Night

View of the Las Conchas Fires outside Los Alamos... photo taken from my back portal (patio). - North

Thursday, June 23, 2011

All Quiet on the Western Front

Currently recovering from nearly four weeks of house-guests from three different states. A great time was had by all. The meaning of life was pondered and ideas storm the recessed beaches of thoughtful intellect over summertime bowls of pipe tobacco... but actual painting was only intermittent at best. Have no fear, new work is coming. - North

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Waiting for the Calm

While waiting on the wind to die-down, I started two new 18"x80" canvases. Once stretched, the pair of completed paintings will each measure 10"x72". - North

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

In Process

These twelve pieces (boxes) are oil on burlap. They are currently about half-way through the painting process. The wind has been heavy the past week and has cut into the outdoor "baking" time I require between the layers of paint. Once finished, they will hang together as a single composition much like "Baked Desert Composition 6" from a couple weeks ago. - North

Monday, May 09, 2011

Weekend Studio Tour

My friend Hank was a huge assistance over the two-day affair. Helping field questions from customers and greet all as they entered the studio.

My best side as I observe the guests. - North

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Baked Desert Composition 4

"Baked Desert Composition 4", Oil on Canvas, 14"x21", 2011 - North

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Baked Desert Composition 3

"Baked Desert Composition 3", Oil on Canvas, 14"x21", 2011 - North

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Baked Desert Composition 6

"Baked Desert Composition 6", Oil on Canvas, 21"x29", 2011 - North

Monday, May 02, 2011

Baked Desert Wall

The previous posted images combined to form a singular installation of paintings 21"x66" total size. - North

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Baked Desert 16

"Baked Desert 16", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3"(depth) - North

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Baked Desert 15

"Baked Desert 15", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Baked Desert 14

"Baked Desert 14", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Monday, April 18, 2011

Baked Desert 13

"Baked Desert 13", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Baked Desert 12

"Baked Desert 12", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Baked Desert 11

"Baked Desert 11", Oil on Canvas, 6"x^"x3" (depth) - North

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Baked Desert 10

"Baked Desert 10", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Baked Desert 9

"Baked Desert 9", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Monday, April 11, 2011

Baked Desert 8

"Baked Desert 8", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Friday, April 08, 2011

Baked Desert 7

"Baked Desert 7", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Baked Desert 6

"Baked Desert 6", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Baked Desert 4

"Baked Desert 4", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Baked Desert 3

"Baked Desert 3", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Monday, April 04, 2011

Baked Desert 2

"Baked Desert 2", Oil on Canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth) - North

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Baked Desert 1

"Baked Desert 1", Oil on canvas, 6"x6"x3" (depth)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"Bather", Oil on Burlap, 24"x70", 2011

"Bather (detail)"

Working on a series of life-size figures that give the illusion of the paint as in-motion.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

New Mural

"Perpetual Growth", 9.5'x3', 2011

I spent the past week-and-a-half painting a new mural at Palette Contemporary Art & Craft Gallery in Albuquerque, New Mexico. My goal was to build a non-traditional-format landscape based-upon the Golden Section, an ancient compositional tool used most notably by Renaissance painters and early adopters of Cubism. At nearly ten feet tall, it took me most of the entire first day to work-out the math for the composition of the under-painting. - North

Now some information on how I attained the composition:

Fibonacci numbers and Phi are related to spiral growth.

If you sum the squares of any series of Fibonacci numbers, they will equal the last Fibonacci number used in the series times the next Fibonacci number. This property results in the Fibonacci spiral seen in everything from sea shells to galaxies:

12 + 12 + 22 + 32 + 52 = 5 x 8
12 + 12 + . . . + F(n)2 = F(n) x F(n+1)

The Golden Section is a ratio based on phi.

The Golden Section is also known as the Golden Mean, Golden Ratio and Divine Proportion. It is a ratio or proportion defined by the number Phi (1.618….)

This ratio has been used by mankind for centuries. Its use may have started as early as with the Egyptians in the design of the pyramids. The Greeks recognized it as
"dividing a line in the extreme and mean ratio"
and used it for beauty and balance in the design of architecture. The Renaissance artists knew it as the Divine Proportion and used it for beauty and balance in the design of art. It was used in the design of Notre Dame in Paris and continues today in many examples of art, architecture and design.

It also appears in the physical proportions of the human body, movements in the stock market and many other aspects of life and the universe.