The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Monday, November 16, 2009

a rooskie in dublin


By Irina Kuksova

Ever wondered, standing in an art gallery on a sunny Sunday, why does one painting cost X whereas one next to it – even a bigger one - costs X/10? Yeah, I keep wondering too. Sometimes, I try to ponder how much time it'd take me to make something similar. Rarely does the result of my calculations justify the indicated price. 

It's not just the technical skill that effects the price. As much as I like painting "realistic stuff", it is not really a challenge. Once I make my mind up on all that there is to be captured on my canvas, executing the plan is only a matter of time. There is no rush as there are no doubts about the outcome. The whole process is pretty relaxing. It's a bit like washing dishes really. And – I like washing dishes. But I wouldn't charge too much for that.

On the other hand, more "artistic" staff – and I mean any artwork which is not a classic portrait/landscape (and much of the image is left to chance) - demand constant decision-making. The artist has to somehow justify the existence of such work. Not to the viewers, but to him/herself. It's much harder to define when the piece is "done". In the absence of a clearly defined desired result, the only guidance the creator has is a "gut feeling", that says: " looks and feels a bit better now…oops, a bit worse now…". Often, in the middle of such "feeling your way", it looks like there was a murder on canvas. It's important not to lose heart, as once the "murder" stage is over, it's all down hill from there. In this case, the painting experience is more like a novel with its twists and turns, losses and victories. 

Thus,  I can understand why some artists would value some paintings more – even though the latter looks like a puddle of colours. It'd cost them to find a way to make this puddle feel right for them. It's not a story of a whatever image on the canvas, it's a much more intimate story of the painter's creative adventure.


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