Tuesday, June 28, 2011

... selects her own Society

12 x 7
charcoal, gouache, pastel, graphite on paper

First a graphite drawing, then charcoal to shape and block in. Paper towel and brush to wipe away detail, block in shapes. Then color, the golds and greens and feeling of the inside of a treasure trove with gouache. The calligraphy of pastel and the feel of the drape barely concealing the pink flesh.

Finally, the words, just phrases from Emily Dickinson's "The Soul Selects" poem. Read here by Julie Harris, when she played "The Belle of Amherst," in 1976.

The Soul selects her own Society --
Then -- shuts the Door --
To her divine Majority --
Present no more --

Unmoved -- she notes the Chariots -- pausing --
At her low Gate --
Unmoved -- an Emperor be kneeling
Upon her Mat --

I've known her -- from an ample nation --
Choose One --
Then -- close the Valves of her attention --
Like Stone --


Casey Klahn said...

This is a captivating image. Glad to see the figure here.

Well blogged! Is it a strange coincidence that I posted a video of Peter Falk reading in my sidebar? Culture is in the air.

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Thanks, Casey. Strange coincidence, indeed! At one point in my undergraduate program (Literature), I was passionate about Emily Dickinson. I still like her spare use of words.

SamArtDog said...

Quite lovely! And thanks for the Dickinson.

Carolyn Rondthaler said...

Very nice. I love the thought you have given to this figure. I love Emily Dickinson, too. So spare...and yet she said everything!

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Thanks, Sam and Caroline!

kathryn gordon said...

a truly captivating painting and perfectly matches the tone of the poem. Thank you for sharing - it's wonderful.

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Thanks, Kathryn, for your comment!