Philip Guston... "Third Hand"

Cabal, 1997....Whitney Museum of American Art 

"I come into the studio very fearfully. I creep in to see what happened the night before. And the feeling is one of, 'My God, did I do that?' 

 Philip Guston

Philip Guston represents the Anti-Koons. Guston's hands and soul....his total psyche....  are all over his painted image.  Koon's bloodless pinkies are soft. 

 Guston  speaks  of the "third hand" in the creative process. I believe I understand  what he is speaking of. Short of ecstasy,  it is a place... an external reality.... where  the painter acquiesces , losing self  in  the creative process .   Released from the mundane, the everyday safeguards and defenses of self,  it is a  place, a reality,  where the artist encounters   Veritas...the goddess of truth.  It is a place where  the  painter's  total being ...hands,   heart,  gut,  paint and canvas  coalesce as  one.  Here   the  artist as    shaman   " interprets  unseen things".  Indeed,  a  magical moment  encapsulated in truth,  where self is at its most vulnerable,   but at its most  creative.    I understand.....and I accept Guston's  logic and approach to the  process of  image making. I too do not like the contrived, the over-worked,  self-conscious image.  Like is the "third hand" that I  welcome. I believe Philip Guston. His honesty ...his genius ....shines in  his work.

Philip Guston in the Studio

I highly recommend  this video/interview.."Philip Guston in the Studio"... to anyone, but most  especially  to painters.   Here,   Guston very matter of of art speak bullshit... discusses his approach  to art making. Guston echos and verifys  what Joseph Campbell, James Joyce and others  have written about the role of the painter. Click link below:  




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