The Aeries Series
aer�ie or eyr�ie or aer�y or eyr�y
1. the nest of an eagle or other bird of prey, usually built in a high, inaccessible place
2. a building, especially a stronghold, in a high inaccessible place
I am often inspired to paint by what I see from way up high, from inaccessible places,
the window of an airplane, the span of a bridge, from the arrogance of our Western culture.
Like all cultures each landscape has a distinct shape and form.
But, in an age of arrogance-related bigotry and terrorism, it's the universal
commonalities that I prefer to explore.
I am struck by how some gigantic shapes resemble those on a much smaller scale; the
rivulet shape is a common one and reminds me of the mark of freshwater flowing from
the dunes to the shore of my favorite beaches on the South East Coast of Ireland where
water flows slowly and more gently.
It resembles the rivulet shape of the Amazon or the Mississippi when I fly over them.
Or the shape of the River Shannon when I'm landing on the West Coast of Ireland.
It is mirrored in the stone carvings of my ancient Irish ancestors and of the Inca and Maya.
And in the snake's skin I found in my garden in New York.
It is the rivulet shape in the vein pulsing on the back of my hand as I type this.
It is in the basalt paved sidewalks of Rio de Janeiro.
And in the lines beneath my eyes as I get older.
It is also the shape of the Indian Serpent Mound of the Middle Ohio Valley where my
friend Pinky's ashes were scattered after he died too young from AIDS in 1993 before we
had drugs to keep him alive.
And it is in the classical sculptures he left us.
I work Sumi ink in to wet watercolor paper and canvas. As the ink dries it takes it's own
shapes and when it finally dries I pick-out and enhance these forms.
I'm trying to think globally, the high often inaccessible road, in an age that's encouraging
tribalism and small mindedness. We can do better.
From the Aerie 1
Acrylic on canvas
66 x 69 inches
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