Friday, October 15, 2010

When the Rain Comes

On Twitter this morning, @Gawker posted a link to a story about Gregory Thielker. Gregory paints images that appear to be photographs taken from inside a car through a rain-covered windshield. These images are so familiar, and would be so easy for anyone to capture with a quick click of their iPhone camera. But that's not what this is. This is an artist, using his hands, a canvas, brushes and paint, using his time to reflect on and reproduce these moments when we see our surroundings in this particular way.

These images instantly put me in a time and a place and a space that I know and understand.

When I was little I was fascinated by the pattern the windshield wipers made on the windshield. Each cycle of the blades carved out this consistent pattern of arcs on the glass. I imagined the wipers were creating some type of force field, protecting ... I don't know what, some little city or something along the bottom border of the windshield frame. The force field would always be undone by fresh raindrops just as quickly as it had appeared. A heavy enough rainfall wouldn't even let the force field fully establish itself -- instant obliteration. "BOIZH!" (That's the explosion sound effect that little boys make. How would you spell it? Not quite onomatopoeia, I suppose, since there's no word for it. But every boy has some form of this sound effect encoded in his DNA.)

I'd like to see Gregory do one of these paintings from the vantage point of the backseat, like a kid would see it. That whole feeling of being safe inside a car in the rain.

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