Setenta Nueve: 79
I want to tell you that it wasn’t easy in 2006 when, on April 4th, I turned 79 years old. Seven is a magical number; we all know, lucky when you win, not so when you ‘crap-out’. Becoming seventy-seven was bad enough, did a painting that year on paper for my double seven (77) year.
But 79, that means that you are on the way to becoming an octogenarian. When you say, “I’m 80,” someone always grabs a chair for you to sit down on; sure, you can be in great health and even be capable to an erection without Viagra, but somehow everyone thinks of 80 as the long slippery slope to death, certainly on your way to the old farts home!
I don’t remember if it was when I awoke to the fact that I didn’t like that caricature or sometime before that, but I set my mind to the task ahead: straighten out my messy life and leave a clean trail behind when I kick the bucket. So, I decided that there were things that needed attention and one of these circled around the comment I read that when an artist dies, he/she leaves two bodies, his own and a body of work.
It isn’t easy to declare openly you’re thinking when you get old, as an artist you think you are young and dynamic and, in some instances, you have the gall to think that you can live forever. The body and mind do get weary, and the “clock of time” does tell you the true time of your life. These images are intellectually driven, and the content is emotional: a complicated means of expression. A language to itself and decipherable by others who can interpret the symbolism transferred.
Displayed is 10 works in the Setenta Nueva Series: 2006, all on Ampersand hardboard: all the same size; 18 x 23 inches; all abstract. There is no attempt, even in the slightest way, to suggest reality. Each is tilted; I assigned a title based on thoughts at the time I was photographing them, but the image is just what was needed and may have related to the entite body of work when I was finished who knows?
©Roland Salazar Rose 2007