A Painting Is a Presence

A painting is a presence. Not that it has presence, though it does. We’re talking about good paintings, real paintings; whatever any of that might mean, in them presence is an essential quality. Maybe quality isn’t the right word…. Is a being reducible to its qualities? Is presence something beyond quality as well as number?

As a painter, a realized painting; or however you want to characterize a painting that does not need anything added or changed; is present. What I mean by this is that it meets you. It does not confront. It meets you where you are and will go with you until you give up and will be ready to go on with you when you return. Your gaze does not exhaust it.

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