August 9, 2013

Friday Flashback - "St. Sebastian"

"St. Sebastian"  oil on canvas  38" x 54"  1976

I'm fairly certain that most of you have never seen this painting.  It has lived in Birmingham, Alabama for the past 33 years.  I don't know why I refer to this piece as "St. Sebastian," as I am nowhere near sainthood in my personal life and I am not shown here martyred:  bound to a tree and pierced with arrows. It is probably just the light on the torso that makes me think of him.  Actually, this work is more of an allegorical time capsule.  Contemplate this Escheresque concept:  the canvas in the background is the canvas on which the painting was painted.  I vividly remember every little artifact on the shelves and floor, from the stale rum-soaked fruitcake in its foil wrapper to the ecology button just below it to the record albums (remember those?) used to fuel the creative furnace.  I modeled for myself a lot back then, when I was young and fair.  I am more suited to portray Sir John Falstaff or Bacchus these days.  *sigh*
"And then the [artist],
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part." 
Here is an annotated version of the painting:


5 comments:

Laura Virella said...

I am absolutely in love with everything about this painting. My heart flutters.

Diane Hoeptner (hep-ner) said...

Sah-weet slice 'o life, Mark. Love this post. (Also you are doing amazing paintings in the new place.)

Mark Adams said...

Danke schön, Laura! Wie Geht's?

Mark Adams said...

Thanks, Diane. I really have to start painting larger works again. I miss fencing with a big canvas.

Anonymous said...

Gee Mark! That's the way I still think of you!!
You looked just like that the last time I saw you.
Guess it's been a while.
The painting resides in Birmingham, Alabama?
I'm in Auburn, Alabama with Auburn University.
Love these flashbacks!
Linda Wallner