March 17, 2010

your brother's blood

your brother’s blood:

an exhibition of new paintings by Mark Horst

March 1—April 30 at the Stillwater Public Library

opening reception: Saturday, March 13, 2:00—4:00 PM

artist’s statement:

Cain killed Abel: murderer and victim. The resentful one; the howling, complaining one; the gifted one; the rejected one; the haunted one. Cain killed Abel, but it was Abel’s blood that cried in the field. Once that happened they were joined forever—brothers. Am I my brother’s keeper? Which brother needs keeping? These paintings hold a space for us to look at ourselves.

I hope the same is true for the mother-child portraits; the portrait of my father; the portrait of a young couple; the seated figures.

For me, the human figure has an evocative energy which may be why I paint the figure more than anything else. The face, the hands, the arms and legs have their own kind of narrative; their own sense of push and pull; of familiarity and otherness.

My portraits attempt to capture this ambivalence—the recognizable features of an individual on the one hand and the skittish, wild soul on the other; the qualities which we recognize in the figure and the light around the body which we often do not.

about me

My photo

These studio notes are scraps of poetry and ideas that feed my work as a painter. I hope they establish a bit of context for the paintings and my intention in making them. Whatever I paint, I’m trying to create some space for us to sit with the questions that are not meant to be answered.