Milton Resnick, Straws, 1981, oil on canvas, 80 x 60 inches, courtesy Cheim and Read
Poet Jerome Rothenberg remembers his encounters with painter Milton Resnick.
"Milton's declaration, right from the start, was that he was a painter who had given up painting in favor of poetry & that he thought that I & my fellow poets should now give up poetry in favor of painting... carrying the intensity he had lavished on painting into a new medium that of words. That he did it instantly & with equivalent grace & fury astonished me, as did his natural & credible assumption of the poet’s [bardic] voice..."
Reed writes: "Resnick told us that we had to decide between two ways of being painters. You could either “climb the ladder of art, struggle and sacrifice to make great works,” or “get on the moving belt, just move, you and the painting which equals your brain.” It took me a long time to figure out that he disapproved of the first and approved of the second. He told us that, as younger painters, we should put on “the shirt of Abstract Expressionism.” Each of us would then have to admit, “I can’t understand this shirt. It doesn’t fit my mind.” Only that way would we get on the moving belt."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.