February 20, 2018

Mini #81: As the Case May Be

"As the Case May Be," 5" x 5", oil on panel

Back in September, I was in my hometown for some work and red tape and managed to hit up the tracks, river, and other choice post-industrial dishevelries.

I sat on the tracks, careful to look for wasps (learned that the hard way more times than I care to admit), and thought about the all the idle hours I spent as a kid tightrope walking the long metal lines, striding the ties up to three at a time, fooling with the big rusty nails and "S"s, feeling the smell of tar lighten my head, squashing pennies flat as communion wafers under the train wheels, slingshotting rocks (even frogs) from "forts" at passing trains, rehearsing ninja moves in case a stray dog came around (about once a week), plucking walking sticks and praying mantises out of bushes (do those even exist anymore?)... And I sketched this scene along an edge of the old Woods factory, currently metamorphosing into a condo, naturally.

Who knows whether metal boxes like these, with sagging wires coming in and out do anything anymore, but they make great canvasses. And something about them being accessible and exposed feels enchantingly perilous.

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