In my flash piece The Sophistry of Now (yeah, I know…don’t look at me, I have no idea what it’s about either) the narrator describes his sudden return to reality from whatever dream sequence or daydream of a trip he had just been on as “…snapping into focus before him looking like a crazy beautiful melodramatic John Currin landscape (if he were to do landscapes).”
Now I’m no Currin aficionado, or even a fanboy for that matter – well, maybe I am a little…low level like. I just somehow became aware of his artistic existence sometime around the turn of the century, became compelled by it, checked it out online, dug it pretty heavily, and then pretty much let him go.
But his work never really let me go.
It is a beautiful, haunting meld of heaven and hell, angels and whores, peace and perversion.
KCET.org writes of Currin this way:
In almost every article written about John Currin, there’s a sentiment that says something like this: John Currin is disputably the most successful painter of his generation. His mixture of art historical techniques with sexual or perverse subject matter helps him create masterful but modern works.
As far as I can tell, he doesn’t do landscapes. However, in some of his portraits, the sky is used as a backdrop and from these pieces, we can get a glimpse of what his landscapes might look like if he were to focus wholly on them.
And they would probably look nothing like the pictures I am sharing with this write-up.
However, tonight’s sky lit up itself and the landscape surrounding my hood in a surreal heavenly, hellishly, beautifully apocalyptic way, a way that, whenever I am fortunate enough to experience it every now and again, always reminds me of a John Currin landscape, if he were to do them…
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