A Jock McDonald Remix Project by Pete Smith.

This blog is a running journal that was made in conjunction with my artist residency at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada that took place between December 2014 and February of 2015.

To get an understanding of how this project fits into the larger scope of my art practice, please visit:


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis

*The picture of JMD here is taken in 1935-36 in BC. He's either pretty much, or exactly my age in this photograph. We seem to have the same hair cut (and beard). My wife always bugs me that I don't smile enough in pictures. It's not cause I want to look artisty. It's because when I stage a smile I feel like a wiener. In real life, I smile a lot. I'm a happy guy. I just find it hard to smile on cue.

research notes: continued from Anna Hudson, 2014.

Pg 119 - "If one exchanges the weaver's yarn for the artist's brushes, Fleeting Breath is a tartan design transmogrified into the fabric of life." What a lovely sentence, Ms. Hudson.

Pg 119-120: Ars longa, vita brevis (Art is long, Life is short)

Pg 120- Hudson claims that "the processes of thought" exposed by automatism were "in Macdonald's lifetime, relatable to quantum field energy jumps." ? She briefly expands on what she means by this in that they "both imagined patterns of attraction and repulsion". But I basically have no idea what this is or how an artist, like Macdonald, would have possibly made this kind of a connection. There's no footnote for this claim, and intense quantum physics seems like a pretty big thing to sweep under the guise of common knowledge. But what do I know? I guess there's Google for that.

Pg 126 - Totally agree with Hudson's connection between Macdonald, the Painters 11 and their then contemporary design. That is absolutely why their work is so interesting (and so completely different from American abstraction). Their abstract paintings look like the 1950's and 60's. And that's totally amazing. Their capacity to achieve this is very influential to me and my work.

Notes from Jock Macdonald's Nootka Diary:

Pg 133 - In 1935, Emily Carr lived at: 316 Beckley Street, Victoria. Lawren Harris lived at: 7 Plaza Chamisol, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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