As much as I enjoy looking at what is being made today in art, I definitely have my favorite works of art that I go back and review. When I first started learning about art in school, the movement that really spoke to me was Surrealism.
You have the big guns of that time – Dali, Magritte (my most favorite), but I was also really intrigued by the work of artist Paul Delvaux. I have never seen any of his paintings in person. Only reproductions in books and on the web. The first time I saw his work was at a Goth nightclub I went to a lot while I was living in San Francisco. Yes, I like getting my Goth on! The club was called A Winter Gone By. One night while I was there, I went to the ladies room and in the hallway; hanging on the wall was this really peculiar reproduction of a painting. The image was simple enough – women wearing high neck dresses, sitting outside their homes with a seascape in the background. Individually, these elements are ordinary, but how they are depicted in this work is quite jarring. There is something haunting or sinister happening or is about to happen. The women all look similar. Is this a coven? Are they part of a cult? What are they patiently waiting for with their hands calmly crossed in their laps? The paintings title “Street of Mermaids” makes in even more intriguing bringing in an element of mythology.
They say that an artist always puts something of their likeness into their work. I looked up photos of Delvaux and discovered that all the women he painted, and he’s painted a lot of them, they all have his eyes.