PHOTO: Herbert Mitgang



Saturday, January 2, 2010

A lightning intuition and a heart to match

A friend who had introduced me to the Painting Group, called  and said: “There’s an opening, do you want to come and paint?.” I arrived that night.  
I knew that the man whose drawing I had admired since my college days was there and I was anxious to meet him. By chance, David was at the door as I approached.He was taking me in as I walked down the corridor. We said hello and he pointed to the studio door. I liked him, I felt.   
At work from the model later, he walked up to my easel and we started to talk. I think I first noticed just how quick his emotions were, how engaging and conversational he was. It was in contrast to his quiet voice. Process, media, drawing, observation. There were actually occasional direct statements about these: they came as surprises, interspersed among observations about palette and brushes, jokes, a model of art history that assumed you knew it, yiddish phrases, asides about politics and a probing for intentions. In the months I knew him, his comments were incredibly apt. Only painters talk this way, and I was feeling grounded. This cultured and gentle, compassionate and funny man had befriended me, and it seemed to me, chuckled a little as his comments lifted the ropes of the ring I was entering.

I realized those conscience-nurturing, penetrating and revelatory, moral images had been drawn by a man with a lightning intuition and a heart to match.

  Michael Monsky 

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