Robert Matheson


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Unlocking the Well of Creativity

Unlocking the Well of Creativity - Latex Paint and Standing Ink on Canvas

Latex Paint and Standing Ink on Canvas 120" x 75"

This is the final painting I completed at The Newberry Observer titled "Unlocking the Well of Creativity". It's actually two paintings. The first started out with basic markmaking using standing ink and white latex paint. It evolved into a man sitting by a fire as his muse stoked the flames. I felt the painting was unresolved in many areas, mostly due to my own lack of conviction. That night I awoke at 4am thinking it was perhaps unresolved because it lacked any sense of collaboration. I drew a new sketch:

Two artists at the well of creativity. One artist holds the key to unlocking the well in his head and his heart. He struggles to pull out a heavy bucket as a second artist provides support and holds it steady. A drop of creativity spills out as the other artist peers in. It illustrates a struggle similar to many that I experienced throughout the project.

Ultimately, I'm proud of this piece. Not because it's particularly exceptional. I'm proud because of what it represents. A community of artists collaborating to overcome our struggles at the well. We did it. We hosted an incredible exhibition featuring work across multiple mediums while being inclusive, positive and supportive of each other. Not to mention we produced a large body of incredible work TOGETHER.

Thank you to all of those who supported the effort by attending the event, sharing it online, buying art and donating money to pay the performers. Also thank you to the businesses who donated space, materials, marketing, food and time.