Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Stories We Don't Tell (oil on canvas, 2014)

We all have our stories - the ones we tell the people in our lives. The ones that define us, the ones that everyone we know has heard at least once, the ones that we can't wait to introduce to new people that come into our lives. (I have a great one that involves my dad's new Volkswagen and a brown paper bag...) These stories define us. They've shaped us, made us who we are and they help us to show others who we are. But there are other stories. The ones we don't tell. Things that we've done or that have been done to us that we don't want anyone to know about. The stories that have scarred us or that reveal our dark side. The stories that we'll take to our graves.

The subjects in my paintings all have stories. Some of these stories I know because neighbors tell them to me. Some are just nostalgia. "Ah, yes, I remember when my grandfather used to pick potatoes there by hand." Some are filled with mystery. "You know, there were three suicides in that house..." And all of them have stories that I will never know. But I can use my imagination.

One day last summer, whilst returning from a bike ride to Bridgewater, which is about 15 miles north from me on US Route 1, I found this group of buildings up on the West Road in Monticello when I turned onto it and then headed back toward Route 1. I like these buildings. They've been fruitful so far and I'm sure they will yield many more images over the coming months and years.

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