Started work this week on There's No Going Back. It's another installment in the desert/abandoned gas station series. I feel I need to come up with an actual name for the series. I have been bouncing back and forth from calling it the abandoned gas station series to the desert series. Well, it's both. There has to be a better name for it however.
There's No Going Back actually sheds light on what this series of works is about. Well, at least it came to me while painting last night. The soundtrack for this series for the most part has been U2's - The Joshua Tree album. I was listening to Red Hill Mining Town and the verse "there's no going back" hit me. There is no going back! I can travel up and down some of the same highways my family did in our nomadic days of moving all over the West, but all there is left of the gas stations, motels and eateries from those days are ruins or new structures that have gone in their places. The formative figures of my childhood have passed, so the only connection to my childhood is my memories (represented by ruins) outside of my siblings. The desolation of the desert is a perfect analogy for separation, isolation and loss. It's a universal experience that everyone in the world will likely share sometime in their life and I just happen to be painting it. I guess this body of work is really about coming to age.