Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Genesis - I

 I visited Bogdan Luca’s studio’s at the end of August 2010. It was a cool evening & a fine drizzle was still sifting above the West Marine compound, where Luca had set up his studio for his newest work of art: a monumental painting. 

The studio, a tall and huge space, lighted ‘a giorno’ by neon lights, appeared gray throughout, a bleak and Spartan enclosure against whose walls five massive panels were leaning.
Scattered on the floor, cans of paint, sketches, brushes, boxes, a ventilator, and in a corner, a chair.

As we began our conversation, a rapid exchange on shifting topics, an understanding of what the painting is began to emerge.  

The five panels Bogdan was working on would eventually merge into one, creating a huge canvas (8’x60’) and which will include, in a symbolic rendition  key events and figures from the history of the Niagara Peninsula, the War of 1812, the first president of Brock University, James Alexander Gibson and an aerial view of the surroundings of Brock University.
But where to start? The details Bogdan was pouring on, with joy, were almost overwhelming. First and foremost I wanted to look at the panels, to take my time and bask in the effulgence of the colors and in the movement of a blue rider and his horse, barreling away into the unknown, at the center of one of the panels.

Yet, as the evening progressed, I discovered there that there was a sense of uniting harmony in the panels, from the blue rider in the panel that Luca had first finished, to the very last panel, where sketches were mostly de rigueur.

As I was getting ready to step out with my notebook already full,  into what was now a pitch dark night by the lake, an image flashed through my mind – the fingers, gently parted on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, a painting that depicts a different kind of genesis, yet still an artistic one. 

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