Still Night in my Eyes

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© “The Beginning”  pastel / pastel paper   18″ x 24″

 

Still night in my eyes

Threads of silk memory

dark purple blue sky,

Siren and muse song

dream dance of disguise,

Strum the stings closer

still night in my eyes,

Thin covered trails

veil creation from lies.

The music now begins

flow of chords in my hands,

the story unfolding

dice destiny commands,

Icarus wing soaring

zenith far and above,

Embrace still the moment

till your senses love,

love,

love.

©Alexander Rosado

 

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© Dark Dance     pastel / pastel paper    24″ x 18″

Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to have been invited by a great friend of many years,

the Puerto Rican virtuoso classical “guitartist” (to use a term he coined) José Antonio López, to witness and enjoy a live rehearsal where a fusion of music and movement would be taking place.

The rehearsal was for the classical guitar and contemporary dance concert “A Una Sola Guitarra” that was yet to be held at the Teatro UPR in Rio Piedras in early March of 2017. I have for countless years (maybe due to listening to trio, flamenco, and classical guitar pieces since childhood and fascinated by the agility, grace, and power present in dance) found the combination of guitar and dance/movement to be a significant catalyst of inspiration and at times a critical component of the intricacies of my art. The contemporary dance company taking part in the extraordinary performance was MayaWest Dance Project which is directed by the the young and extremely talented professional dancer David Soler.

Both the dance and the music helped give form to some existing ideas and ignite a series of new ones. The work titled “The Beginning” and the poem “Still Night in My Eyes” are but a sample of the result of merging the recent with the past.

 

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© The Stretch (mounted for finishing touches)   charcoal / archival mat board    16″ x 13″

Fear of Crashing

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© “Patroklos” after Jacques Louis David c.1780   charcoal, charcoal white / toned card stock paper   8.5″ x 11″

A few weeks back I conceived a short poem from a recalled dream, which I did not completely understand (remaining ambiguous to a certain degree as most dreams do).

I had decided to not post it for the moment because it apparently did not have any relation to what I was working on at the moment which were some drawings, so devoid of an elegant paring of both poem and drawings, I waited and remained waiting without posting.

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© Study of Antagonism   charcoal, charcoal white, colored pencil / pastel paper    11″ x 8.5″

After viewing a video a few days ago from the course “The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hrs” where the scholars Douglas Frame and Gregory Nagy discuss “telos” and it’s relationship to charioteers and crashes, the dream and poem resonated on a very different level for me, especially since the title of my poem was “Fear of Crashing”.

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© Rising Girl Back study    permanent marker, charcoal / card stock paper    11″ x 8.5″

 

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© Female head study    charcoal, ink, colored pencil / pastel paper    11″ x 8.5″

The discussion centered around chariot driving and the outcomes for heroes such as Patroklos, Nestor, Phaethon, and Hippolytus, all having to do with life/career paths, stages, initiations, and cycles.

A very important key for me: avoiding crashes with mythological bulls and incoming traffic. Here is the very short poem:

Fear of Crashing

Night highway flowing darkly,

swarming headlights blind my eyes,

against traffic I’m driving,

lane swerving swift motions of mine.

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© Figure study sketch  charcoal, white charcoal / pastel paper    8.5″ x 11″

Ode to the Strangers

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© Ode to the Strangers   mixed media / pastel paper     18″ x 22″

Ode to the Strangers

Sightless three seers, uproar a muffled sound,

I see crystallized minds, soft arabesque-ing aground,

I hear the breathing of fates, eerie discourse of years,

dogs’ camouflage barking, singing crocodile tears.

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© Untitled drawing   charcoal/pastel paper  11′ x 8.5″

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© Untitled Line Study  mixed media / toned card stock paper    11″ x 8.5″

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© Study for Three Figures    charcoal/pastel paper    8.5″ x 11″

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© Study for Dancing Figure   mixed media / toned card stock paper   11″ x 8.5″

Triple Theme Time

P1090616©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz  Yawning Gnosis 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

Here finally are three drawings which I recently completed.

Although each one is related to a different time period in history, they have been joined on this occasion through synchronicity, or maybe through chance :

The first is “Yawning Gnosis” – which I posted as a work in process in my last writing (Feb, 2016). I had briefly stopped writing down my dreams fresh when awakened, therefore they would slowly fizzle into fuzzy formed fragments which I wouldn’t bother to jot down. I believe they somehow went straight back to some storage space in the realm of unconsciousness, unapproachable unless through some sort of meditation, hypnosis, or moksha state. Al this turned into a huge hiatus. There were also other pressing deadlines during that time that came up – some even self inflicted.

P1090627 (1)©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz  After Lucas Cranach the Younger  17″ x 14″ graphite & charcoal / 70lb Canson drawing paper

The second drawing is a copy after a drawing by a great northern European master I deeply admire, Lucas Cranach the Younger. In my version I highlight a tad more the eyes, and the expression tends more towards a smile. It is a portrait of Princess Elizabeth of Saxony c. 1564 currently at Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museum, in Berlin. I also greatly admire his father, Lucas Cranach the Elder’s work and his depiction of the human figure and features. There is a painting of Judith with the Head of Holofernes at the Ponce Museum of Art in Ponce, Puerto Rico attributed to him which I love. It has his characteristic fantastic style, elegance, beauty, and mood. There is another very similar painting by him with the same name/theme currently at Kunsthistorisches Museum, in Vienna.

P1090610©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz  After Pheidias sculpture  14″ x 17″ graphite & charcoal / 70lb Canson drawing paper

The third is a drawing of the ancient Greek male torso sculpture “Ilissos” attributed to Pheidias c. 438 B.C. which is part of the Parthenon pediments. The sculpture intrigued and inspired me somehow, although it is millennia old, its pose seemed quite contemporary and the visible signs of wear, aging, and damage create to a certain extent a haunting and beautiful contrast.

It is in this light that I delve a bit deeper into the concept of time. The following poem inspired by a recent dream sort of deals on different levels with the impressions of “aging” of fine spirits, fine bodies, and fine attitudes.  Enjoy.

Decanter of Time

Unsure cause of celebration

wrinkled song canteen bar

serve me something fancy

slow bartender grizzled shard

Set some sample glasses

cold cube commissary shine

high priced whiskey bottle

Khronos perfume flask design

Pour gold liquid luster

anxiety my head abounds

is this silky precious elixir

(sour, stale, or)

exquisitely sound

Gaudían Like Structures

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz unfinished Yawning Gnosis 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

The poem ‘Gaudían Like Structures’ is inspired by recent states and frames of mind of futility, struggle, and doubt, and the following dream:

I arrive at the square in the town of Aguada where I grew up as a child and find the church/cathedral totally transformed into a Gaudían like structure. I find this change totally captivating and stand in awe as the lineal symmetry of the old church has become almost alien-like and fluid. I could almost compare it to a classical  musical concert transformed into a Latin jazz jam – both beautiful in their own way.

Above is an update on the slow progress of my drawing Yawning Gnosis. I am currently also working on a double portrait painting that requires much more of my time than is usual because of a looming deadline. Whoosh!

Gaudían Like Structures

Questioning the insane the very existence

harmony feeding fake fat far removed

lowly drippings in this world so slow

strong emotions riding hard gross stone.

Despair design degree disgrace

headlights dimmed low

eyesight displaced.

Cathedral temple church crumbles,

revisiting landscape.

Gaudían like structures replace antique line

I marvel strong spectacle

staggering beauty sublime.

Delight design degree acclaim

numerous questions remain,

vision version renewed

multi hued ludic tunes

reign ample prelude.

I’ve included a photo of Casa Batlló and of La Pedrera which are similar to the image in the dream and one ofthe church “Parroquia San Francisco de Asis de Aguada”. The images are from the site gaudiclub.com and from wikimedia commons.

batllo14     pedr3     Plaza_de_Aguada

Yawning Gnosis

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz unfinished Yawning Gnosis 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

 

The image above is an example of the in process graphite drawing stage currently being rendered, as can be seen from the two previous posts where I also posted samples of drawings in different stages.

The drawing reaches a point where it might feel complete or seems to work regardless of the initial intention. The poem Yawning Gnosis is a short current reflection and summons on my work.

Yawning Gnosis

Tome Sovereign in dark dialogues

bequeath arcane lustrous lux

unwind yawning gnosis

lay bare brooding brooks.

Spear flashing rumination

rage vision thought spared

convex plain conception

calm clarity unimpaired.

Mystic Aegis

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz Aegis (detail) 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

I have been enjoying the process of searching continuously for three dimensionality and realism from the subtleties present and then meticulously transferring this information onto current drawings.

The process entails a persistent pursuit and exploration of perception. I posted a detail of the initial stages of the drawing “Aegis” in the previous post and the one above is the same detail almost complete. You will find a more complete version at the end of the poem “Mystic Aegis” (a short poem inspired by a couple of recent dreams). “Que lo Disfruten!”

Mystic Aegis

On water walking brawny steed,

galloping feather-light fair stride,

ocean prancing marvel deed,

from floating mountain nimble glide.

Stagnant dismal aqueous lake,

backward soggy gutter ground,

flash flood clearing ample slate,

raw fresh crystal gushing sound.

Phoenix wing-free lone Pegasus,

quartet legged heuristic flight,

savant savior mystic aegis,

mythic escort sole requite.

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz Aegis 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

Song

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz Song 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

 

I’ve finally found my way back here after a few holiday blogpost-free weeks which honestly I needed to recharge and finish up details on the graphite drawing “Song” and start another which is a nude male torso.

Great New Year wishes to all!

 

The drawing Song is an example of a meticulous study of light and shade and the different levels present and how they are perceived and transferred to paper via in this case graphite pencils. I have used the spectrum of 4H to 8B. In terms of composition, I have chosen to break the initial triangular form I was intending into a more diagonal semi parallel line form. The poem “Song” is from current musings on life and the drawing. Enjoy!

SONG

Dance float till the sounds,

soft aroma emotions,

finding delicate windows,

in slow saviour motions.

Savorer of mirrors,

self indulgent disguise,

absurdity dragging circles,

song free luscious sky.

Hey! you there!

bring me back from despair,

far away from this song,

from this free loving form,

this maker of meaning,

this happenstance cause.

Song,

crash waves on my eyebrows,

sun bursting desire,

wash over this symbol,

shine pleasant conspire,

moist feminine salt,

breeze humid estate,

conspicuous these locks,

liquid

languid

escape.

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz untitled unfinished drawing (detail) 14″ x 11″ graphite / 98lb Canson mixed media paper

Bat Trapped in a Studio Tale

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz The Stand (La Parada) 12″ x 6″ acrylic / canvas

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz Scarred Icon Bebe II 24″ x 18″ acrylic, tobacco leaves, gesso / canvas

The two paintings above are intricately involved in a recent event in my studio that inspired me to write a story about it.

The event occurred in the month of June and led me to tell the tale in a non conventional format. Here is the account in verse form – I do admit it was not easy to write, although it was quite fun – hope you enjoy!

 

Bat Trapped in a Studio Tale

The light of dusk is slowly fading,

a sturdy metal studio chair

bears me,

certain sounds patter to my right;

somewhere near my paintings by chance,

maybe butterfly or moth in flight,

in the limelight desiring dance.

Where initially I am startled,

as the noise is not too soft,

I assume enormous is this moth,

I get up and try to find out.

Let the movement continue,

this assembled situation,

allow to pinpoint the position,

approaching spot of suspicion,

so stunned a tiny talon, I believe is what I saw,

what is this I question, a butterfly with a claw?

I realize this no insect,

as I identify its condition,

a mammal in fact it seems,

a bat trapped in location,

how is this to be?

My studio doors are always open,

(not some hotel in California),

they can check-in any time they like,

and they can always leave.

Winged herald quest of liberation,

paintings are a puzzle or a maze,

searching for possible locations,

structures the senses do amaze.

The choice to be secluded,

behind the work: “The Stand”,

few canvases I remove,

to acquire some advance,

in some ways quite befitting,

a shamans’ show of stance,

of somehow stating something,

of pointing way direction,

of awareness nature yearning,

of myth or dream of own.

I wish to show it outside,

to thrust this traveler free,

pull the shackles from its wings,

but then it changes paintings,

to a more delicate entree;

a tobacco covered work,

the fragile “Scarred Icon Bebe (II)”,

which quite reluctant I am to shake.

(I hear my spouse advise,

“you must turn off the lights,

the brightness has made it ‘blind'”.

How then can I see? I nonchalantly replied;

and guard my hand from the likes

of viable capricious bites.)

Heeding her suggestion,

I proceed to dim the luster,

behind the painted canvas,

its courage begins to muster,

he finds a way to slither,

then start to fly around,

and round the room in circles,

and miss by much the door,

it crawls again exhausted,

and seems to kiss the floor.

My compassion therefore swollen,

it’s persistence I admire,

I approach this hero fallen,

entangled in its desire.

Flight finding freedom!

Out the door with a hover,

although difficult to fathom,

nature urges such a ponder,

instantly I have been heartened,

at last did it recover!

Fake Keys and Stolen Jokers

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©Alexander Rosado-Muñoz Ibis 16″ x 12″ acrylic / linen

Most of the dream inspired poems which I have posted in this blog have been inspired also by recent paintings. In the case of the poem “Fake Keys and Stolen Jokers” or “An Ibis Peck” I had practically finished the poem and none of the paintings currently in process seemed to work well within the verses.

There was one painting which might have also worked but I was a bit reluctant to use since it was not completed. I decided to look around the studio and found the painting “Ibis” which initially did not seem to work well either but had something going for it and after a paused contemplation the verses started to flow and work.

Enjoy.

Fake Keys and Stolen Jokers (or “An Ibis Peck”)

Juicy awesomeness is a pillow,

sweet weary heavy head,

second floor extension cords,

wrap the city pulling (cables),

see myself quite outside,

changing paths and finding fast,

noticing lines that barely arrive.

Beak pecking wisdom,

divine encounter,

Ibis floating amidst my shoulder,

repeat revelations undoubtedly unknown,

some secret spirals are bound to the bone,

others not so, and need to be grown:

“Those in charge are seldom present,

always walking towards town,

wrong direction wayward ride,

shattered glass streetside parking,

truth be heading countryside”

Anxious moms’ car broken into,

keys are fake and stolen jokers,

give a goddamn call and tell,

blue burning wax hand brokers

(fuming ears and foaming mouth),

are now big boss race car drivers.

Some men learn to shake the hands,

to unearth the works of lost crayons,

and fill the blanks of timed exams;

below the table beneath the calm,

wrench the cables and extract my arm.