The Satellite Gallery presents:
Dreams and Structures – New Works by David Sheldon
“The decisive question for man is: Is he related to something infinite or not? That is the telling question of his life." - Carl Jung
The current work continues my exploration of “abstraction coming to life". I begin each work, by attempting to throw out “all that I know”. In this way, I have been able to allow my subconscious life to manifest itself before me in a natural way - without preconceived notions.
When I begin a piece, I allow my inner attention to move out of my head (or “thinking center” ) and start instead from lower in my body/being - from what I would call my “emotional center”. After this initial burst of visual energy, my “intellectual center” then begins the work of refining and sorting out what is there. A visual choreography eventually emerges, where every element of the painting finds a specific place to keep the dance moving and alive. The resulting image is refined and balanced, but holds an inner emotional intensity that speaks of something beyond intelligence and reason.
As I modify and refine the work, its interesting to see what sorts of personal influences make their way into the painting, from early Gothic/Medieval sources, through Baroque to Contemporary art movements. And the entire piece takes on a cosmological aspect as simple, circular shapes becomes, suns, moons and planets. For me, it becomes a “cosmological dance”, affirming a logic beyond my own reasoning.
Yet, behind all the noise and movement in my paintings, my primary interest is capturing “what does not change” in Life – the mysterious “silence behind the noise” – the “stillness behind the movement”. If a transformation of Being involves connecting with an inner stillness and attention within myself, then, the paintings become a call to that inner search for “connection”.
Computer-use gradually crept into my painting process. Now it is crucial to it. The computer allows me to manipulate imagery in ways I could only have dreamed about thirty years ago. The layering of dimensions that you see in computer games, and imagery is very much part of my work, as well. At the same time, I consider the act of working with brush and paint “my anchor”. It is my reality. I still very much like “flying by the seat of my pants” and the traditional form of painting allows me the freedom and means to explore the unknown. It is the exploration of this Great Mystery that I value above all else…. it is where I find true meaning in my life.