Sunday, November 14, 2004

I remember first moving back to the city...I remember I used to say hello to people as we passed each other by. I don't do this anymore. More often than not, I find myself walking quickly with only my destination in mind. I only register other people as obstacles to negotiate around. I think we all find ourselves in this mode at some point or another.

I think that from now on, I will make more of an effort to say a sincere and friendly hello to people I pass. I'll start appreciating the walk itself as important as arriving at point B.

One thing I will always find difficult is looking directly into a stranger's eyes. Many people do this either as a sign of respect or to gain respect, but for myself I always feel as though I am intruding. It is like looking into someone else's closet. There is an intimacy in looking into another human being's eyes that I feel I need to respect. I find it to be one of the greatest pleasures I know to have a close friend or a family member with whom I can engage in that kind of honesty. I wonder if anyone else feels the way I do about this subject...


Anonymous said...

I love looking into my conversational partners' eyes. I use mine to speak, and look for answers or questions in theirs.
The level of comfort with eye contact is often determined by upbringing or culture. Native people often avoid eye contact, thinking that it is disrespectful and "invasive". Is that why you so very rarely allow the figures in your paintings to gaze directly at the viewer?

Anonymous said...

This is exactly the reason! I am happy that you noticed. It is true that when I do paint the eyes looking directly at the viewer, I feel like the figure is being imbued with an incredibly brazen quality - a directness and intimate knowledge that borders on over-familiarity and challenge... But sometimes that is exactly what is required!


Anonymous said...

To discover truth one must look deep into the eyes to gain an understanding of the mystery that is the individual - it's always there to see for eyes rarely lie.