Early on Easter morning a fire broke out and burned down an iconic old building in my home town of Clarion. The building housed Bob's Subs along with a few other businesses. Bob's Subs is legendary in the region. I worked there as a teenager and anyone who’s attended Clarion University has eaten many a Bobs Sub. I usually have one whenever I go back home…they are just so good and it's tradition as well.
I happened to be home visiting, so Easter afternoon I walked downtown to see for myself. When I saw the smoldering embers, I thought of the loss, all the history of the place and of course how lucky that no one was hurt. Then I thought how grateful I was that I had done a painting with Bobs in it!
The Jackson Inn where I live in Delaware is a landmark tavern and has been on my list of places to paint. Just 2 weeks before heading to Clarion Easter, I heard it was closing it's doors for good and possibly being razed to the ground. Blessed with some early spring weather, I got a couple good painting days in over there and painted 2 views of The Jackson Inn before any damage was done.
All this got me to thinking how paintings really are a recording of a moment in time and place. That that can be very specific for some, like Bob's Subs on the corner of 5th and Main and The Jackson Inn OR just the feeling of a small town street that reminds you of a trip to grandmas, a town you grew up in, or a place you used to hang out in with friends.
I’ve balked at that definition of my paintings in the past. It seemed trivial to me. I have to say....I’ve changed my mind! I feel profoundly honored to paint these places and glimpses of time that will never exist again. In essence, that is every painting isn't it....?
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