roy dowell, 'constructed histories,' metro canoga station scheduled to open 2006
i was particularly enamored with his collage work, over his earlier paintings. most of his compositions are heavily filled, which caused my eyes to dart a lot..but, calm areas would surface eventually. one particular piece had me in a trance (untitled #?) i must've taken 10 different photos within one quadrant. when the chaos of a piece becomes too much, i have to find a place to rest, even if it only encapsulates a square inch. dowell never completely abandoned painting, incorporating it alongside, under and over his paper constructions. these are the places i fell into, wondering whether a line was painted or pasted down, or both....trying to piece together lines and shapes so they fit in some sort of order in my mind, while still being utterly satisfied with things askew. it was the kind of work that made me happy i was right there, right then....living, and able to see. his use of text was of particular interest to me, as the truncated letters and numbers took on purely geometric forms...providing just the right juxtaposition between familiar and abstract imagery.
so, why am i so upset i lost all physical record of my experience? i was there, i saw it. i guess i'm afraid i'll forget, or maybe i hoped to see something emerge in the photos that i couldn't digest in the moment. or maybe it's because i HAD pictures, and now i don't? had i forgotten my camera all together, would i still feel this way? i can't say..maybe i'm frustrated because i so wanted to share my delight with others, and my words can't possibly express as well as the work itself.
i guess i'll just have to let it go.
what i saw will be with me, somewhere...forever.