Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Gathering people in a pandemic

    Artists are known for their imaginations, creating worlds they want on canvas or letting worlds create themselves on canvas or the page. I paint people and my house is full of them.

     When I first arrived in Belmont, I went to a home with a huge Robert Freeman painting of At the Party or one in his Tuxedo series. I wanted one of RF's paintings in my living room since it would be a party around the clock. Beautiful black and white tuxedos, red and blue w dancing figures, life-size or bigger. Instead, I have Linda and the Painting Teachers and a number of Last Supper compositions with modern art themes and artists.But plenty of people, family and others!

    During this Covid-19 pandemic, our lives seem not too different; because although alone, we are surrounded by people in paintings. Joe is retired, we are home a lot with our dog Harry, and both enjoy reading and making things. To mitigate the virus curve we are under orders from our children to stay at home for protection of ourselves and others...to stay alive and not to kill. The only challenge is to find a grocer's time slot when food can be ordered and delivered. We enjoy new recipes for meals. We have no guests; but with paintings and photos, we are surrounded by people, not just in Facetime or Zoom, but on the walls in every room. The other night, I lingered at a painting of the family in a bedroom and the enormity of the pandemic FINALLY hit me.

      All of a sudden I realized life has changed and we won't see our grandchildren in the same way. What about their disrupted lives? Things are very different and the immensity is staggering and poignant. Despite having continuous news, living away from the front lines, we slowly realize the shock and enormity. Looking at the paintings and photos both comfort and disturb. Painting a new world might console and inspire. Art has a way. (Click to enlarge photos.)



  1. An excellent and very touching post. You are so right about how dramatically life has changed. Too, so right about how from now on, we won't see our grandchildren in quite the same way. This sheltering in place is much easier for us elders. For the children, it is much more challenging, and that's bound to have long-term consequences for them.

  2. I'm so happy to see your paintings and pictures in this blog. You don't have to tell us ALL how life has changed. I'm even doing yard work on a beautiful day just to get some exercise and be outside. Tomorrow the temperature drops and here in Boulder there will be slushy snow and I'll be inside again.

  3. Yes, things have changed--but taking time to relish the memories from the times we are leaving will be part of our new ways. Your family surrounds you with love.

  4. Great post, Linda. For some reason, I am particularly moved by the pet portraits. Most dogs in my neighborhood can't believe their good luck lately. Each of your family pictures is a party! Until we can meet in person again, your blog is a way for me to say "hi". Really appreciate it!