I recently read an article about the difficulty of understanding art. I’ve never truly struggled with that issue, but when I hear someone say “I don’t get it,” I do have an understanding that art work resonates with some people and not with others. This is to be expected. I for one find this to be one of the most interesting aspects of art in general. Great art allows us the freedom to explore the concept, the meaning and also our feelings toward the piece. Personally, when I see a body of work, or even a single piece of art that resonates with me, the feeling is instantaneous.
The last time this reaction took place was two days ago when I found myself in the daylight-drenched studio of Santa Fe based artist Lawrence Fodor. Walking into the studio, I was faced with a wall of subtle color. Taken either as individual tiles, sets of four to nine, or even as the entire wall, I felt an overwhelming sense of connection to both the place, Santa Fe, and the feeling that Fodor was trying to convey.
I found myself standing at a distance and taking in the entire piece, and then getting extremely close to study the minute detail of each tile, all done painstakingly by trapping points of negative space. I was overwhelmed by the commitment to actually produce the piece, and when I asked Fodor if he’d ever do this again, his response was an immediate, “Absolutely.” Producing this piece was not without its pitfalls and Fodor admits that his vision suffered during the hours required to work in such detail.
Spending the last twenty-years of my life in photography has allowed me to skirt the edges of the art world, but all these years later I find myself being more and more interested in contemporary art. The vision, craft, and hands-on requirements are different from photography and force me to think in greater depth about things like process. Fodor has since produced a catalog of this work with Blurb, which will accompany his upcoming show at the Laguna Art Museum. His work can be seen at www.lawrencefodor.com.