Saturday, December 17, 2016


Joan Mitchell, Marlin, 1960, oil on canvas

"Marlin is one of the 'very violent and angry paintings' that Mitchell created around 1960 after her move to France. The image may have reminded her of deep-sea fishing off the coast of Montauk, Long Island, or it might have come from her summers spent sailing the Mediterranean with friends. All of the energy of Mitchell's painting style whirls around a vortex of thick, vivid strokes, while thin spatters and stains fly out to the margins. This explosive power did not come from random attacks with the paintbrush. Mitchell flatly stated that 'the freedom in my work is quite controlled. I don't close my eyes and hope for the best.' The artist regarded painting as 'a way of feeling alive,' and she paradoxically evoked the death throes of a famously difficult game fish resisting the bloodied hook." ~ Smithsonian American Art Museum


  1. You can think of anything at this painting, the "explosive power" is the best description I think.

  2. You could see a marlin under the surface here. Then very nicely done.

  3. ...I like it, but is it upside down?

  4. How wonderful to use your anger for creating something like this.


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