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I do a lot of drawings of faces. Here is a small selection of faces, as were exhibited in the Galatea Fine Art Gallery in Boston, September 2019.
Sometimes it’s the memory of a person, someone who is suffering or has died, which prompts the drawing of a face. -- as though, through the drawing, “A Voice Speaks to me from Beyond”. The drawings here were all done, in pencil or pencils, on an Arches papier 14.25 by 10.25 inches.



Looking across left to right, then down and again across:

Face, 2

Have we a name, a place?

Is Monni hallucinating, or is she just dying?

Face, 1

A Voice Speaks to me from Beyond

Thinking of Abel


Multiple Facets

In my drawings there are multiple facets, a diversity of expression and of goals. Here are a few examples of the range.

Etching, “Reflection”, 1967.

Though an Etching, it’s akin to my drawings. It is an early precursor to the development of the “Art as Visual Language” approach: above the head of the man is a labyrinth, in which, as though his thoughts, there is a poem. Below him, on the small island on which he sits, there is a lake; in his reflection in the lake the form of a woman’s face appears. The words of the poem, addressed to her, are also reflected in the water, written backwards as in a mirror, and dispersed and further turned over by waves.

“King”, in the House: Living in London, 1967,

I designed a “House”, in which lived five characters -- King, Queen, Scribe and others -- , and in which the architecture of the rooms reflects each character’s personality. The way in which the characters move through the house and interact with others tells a story of a family yet one which takes on a universal quality. “The House” has many pages of writing and drawings. This page represents the King.

At the time I was interested to find an affinity to the “Memory Theaters” described by Frances Yates in her book, “The Art of Memory”. (Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1966) “The House” was also a precursor to the “Art as Visual Language” approach, in that the Visual Language is involved in an “art of memory”, its visual calligraphic markings being a mnemonic device for remembering moments of perception and thought during one’s Walk in landscape, and, in transforming and combining these markings in new ways, possibly reaching toward other levels of awareness. At this time, 1967, I also found relevance in the work of R.D. Laing.

“A Word”, drawing, ink on paper.

The drawing expresses my sense of being “stunned” when first seeing the Luberon Landscape in France. Its beauty and variegated forms, of having been cultivated for centuries by a cultural tradition of paysan farmers, prompted me to find a mode of registering fleeting or numinous impressions, wherein words alone, or images alone, are not enough. Thus the pencil here falls from the person’s hand, and a peculiar word-image form emerges from her mouth, one by which she herself is puzzled… One has to go beyond one’s usual sense of self to begin to understand.

“Poeme-Dessin” (“Poem-Drawing”), with poem, “My skin, like an open door…”, ink

and colored pencils on Canson paper, 19.6” x 16.5”, 1986

Transcoding of a poem I wrote, into the Visual Language expression: I took the poem through the sequence of steps used for a Walk, by which, via a choice of calligraphic/pictographic markings the Walk, or, here, the poem, is summarized -- and an organic grid, or “Basic-Format”, is created. Within the Basic-Format various elements of the poem, as visualized within the landscape, are drawn. The transcoding leads to one’s having new associations of meaning, in addition to what one may have thought when initially writing the poem.

Jean Peytard, professor of semiotics and linguistics, of the University of Franche-Comté in Besançon, France, asked me to write an article about this work. The article, “Art et Langage Visuel; Transcodage du Poème en Dessin”, was published in 1992. (See Writings.)