Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Posted by Aubrey Levinthal
Recently I've been asking myself if it is wrong to love my things. It all started when I was telling Alex how I admire his mom's ability to let go of things so easily if they break or are lost or left somewhere. We decided his family almost has this philosophy that it is wrong to love objects. And then I read this article in which a painter I admire, Kathryn Lynch, talks about how moving is cathartic and makes you a ruthless editor of your things.
But then I walked around looking at the things that I love and decided; no I can defend myself and my love of the inanimate. First of all, I am a still life painter and have a natural affinity for objects. And the reason why is because they have always held meaning. And then I realized something even better -- the reason I am interested in painting my things, or certain things and not other things is because they embody something, whether it be a quirkiness in shape or color or a personal sentiment. So above is some of the evidence I collected walking around with my camera:
1. Bright yellow (the perfect chartreuse-y yellow) antique thrifted plates I found with my mom.
2. A beautiful little painting given to me by a good friend in my MFA program, Eric Huckabee
3. My odd collection of dishes each given by a different friend, all mismatched perfectly.
4. My great aunt and uncle's old kitchen clock from a farm in Watts county, PA.
5. A vintage recipe from Italy, in Italian, from my aunt Bonnie and my magnetic egg timer.
6. Artwork from a favorite six year old student and my Barkley Hendricks magnets from PAFA.
7. My antique mushroom prints found on Ebay and sent from Scandinavia, and Nugget's favorite elephant
8. My student print, radio from defunct family store Levinthal's, & cactus from Courtney's wedding shower
9 &10. My Kirsten Fisher sculpture, a good friend from grad school -- fits just perfectly in the windowsill cutout
And so yes, these are just things and everyone's things are from somewhere, but they hold and ignite thoughts in me, just through looking...and that's plenty of reason to justify being kept around in my book.