The gifts that Santa didn’t have in his big sack
But first: apologies. I’m sorry some of you recently had trouble navigating my pages. I got rid of my old theme (Arte). I liked the look of it but it caused too many problems. Most of them have now been resolved. Thanks for your understanding! That was an extra gift of winter 🙁
Even if it’s difficult to predict something these days and even if a lot doesn’t last: my winter depressions are as certain as the back taxes. Nearly. The tax-back payment is more reliable in terms of time. My winter depressions usually start in mid-January and go away again in early March. They struck earlier this year.
But, and that’s gratifying, over the years I’ve managed to cope quite well with it. I think one of the reasons is that I’m getting better and better at drawing them down. A joke. No, I pick up my brush and let whatever comes. On the one hand, it is a very Taoist approach to keep thinking away from painting. Above all, I am in the here and now when I paint and don’t have any gloomy thoughts. Depression can have a variety of effects, and some of us have experienced it. As long as they don’t get the upper hand, it’s not all that bad to me. Like driving a car for 1-2 months with the handbrake slightly on.
Making music, writing or painting are very helpful tools to get through this time well.
About 2 years ago I painted, probably for the first time, for “therapeutic reasons”. I introduced this picture: “Paint away the pain” (#1). For whatever reason, one day I suddenly had a terrible headache – which then largely disappeared while I was painting. It probably works because you shift the focus of attention.
My earlier attempts to artistically treat the subject of depression were rather dark and heavy. But they were never destructive though. (#2)
Even with a rather “difficult” picture like this one from 2021, there is a way out, “a light at the end of the tunnel” so to say.
This year the works seem a bit more forgiving, even more playful. They are probably not pictures that one likes to give grandma for the 90s, but works that invite you to take a closer look, I hope.
These more recent paintings also reflect my most recent attempts to incorporate calligraphy – or, as in these cases, strokes reminiscent of calligraphy – and thus underline the poetic note. (#3)
An image like this reflects the initial stages of depression quite well. Colors and shapes begin to change, and reality is distorted, like an enchanted forest in a dream. Gradually, however, one begins to feel “alone in the forest” and it starts to get a little uncomfortable. As before, in this picture, too, the light brings relaxation.
And then there’s the depression that hits you like a club in the head. The gentle-knock-out variant. (It was intended as a study. But now that I’m looking at the picture again, I think I just need to work a bit more to get it as a finished work. So it’s still a work in progress).
At some point there comes a stage where you are surrounded by it: the surround version. But everything clears up again, the sun starts to peek through the black clouds and you know that the magic will soon be over. At least the one with the winter blues, not with the tax arrears. (#5)
related: watching the night
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