C I T R U S J A Z Z
NOON IN MOROCCO
POSTCARDS FROM THE STUDIO
"It's late night in the studio and I'm listening to jazz musicians Oscar Peterson and Dave Brubeck and thinking how much they owe to the influence of Japan. I do as well. I have just finished the "Kimono Quartet."
In these intimate works, the glowing gradation of color creates a peaceful, deep, floating quality reminiscent of the Ukiyo-e woodblock prints by Japanese artists such as Hiroshige and Hokusai. In contrast, the vertical panels of pattern flatten the space, acting much like shoji screens in the compositions. I find this interplay intriguing.
I remember how Van Gogh, Matisse and the Impressionist painters were influenced by these innovative Japanese printmakers. The use of space in their compositions was so non-traditional that the Japanese public did not initially accept them and the prints ended up being used as packing material for goods shipped to the West. The European painters of the day found these groundbreaking prints stuffed into the crates, and they snapped them up. The influence of these Japanese masters is still felt today.
The "Kimono Quartet" weds notions about space, beauty and improvisation shared by jazz and Japan. These paintings make me think of the sensuality of moonlit nights, the luminous shadows of noon in Morocco, the whisper of rain, and the mysterious essence of the Kimono."
Embrace Beauty, KNight
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