I feel out of it. Everything is touched by this Pandemic but most of all, I feel out of it without people. And so, I paint what I miss.
First, I painted friends and relatives as large faces that captured the essence of each person in their eyes and mouths which is how I feel we communicate. Gradually my studio filled with friendly faces and I was not alone. This series premieres at Elizabeth Moss Galleries September 26th.
Then I began two series that reflected the activities I missed most— gathering at art museums and eating out with those I love. The former gave me an added gift as I got to paint in the manner of favored artists in museums.
The Eating Out series evokes the joy when out with a group of friends in a convivial restaurant setting. For me the best of dinners feels like a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party.
Painting puts me in touch with what I miss during the Pandemic— literally.
Initially anxious, unmotivated, and disoriented, this time has opened possibilities I could never have imagined. Isolating at home with few distractions has given me the time to focus on my art in a new way. I am nourished by nature, my garden and my heightened awareness in the moment.
As I continue to work as a psychotherapist from home, I think my recent artwork reflects the roller coaster of inner peace entwined with worry about loved ones and the world.
Eva Rose Goetz
“Greetings from the New World”: Painting within a pandemic
In March, asked to socially isolate and wash our hands, I began journaling the pandemic through paintings. The world had stopped and all of us were experiencing and wondering what may greet us, together, isolated within the pandemic. This series was to visually report, reflect, and transcend the hurt and confusion playing out within the collective and myself; a coping mechanism.
As I painted, many died from the virus. COVID-19 brought into sharp focus unsustainable practices hidden within the folds of affluence and unjust health care policies. The murder of George Floyd proclaimed brutal police policies, coupled with racism, are undeniably alive and running through America’s veins. As the availability of water and space to distance became understood as necessary, the virus rebranded homelessness and the incarcerated as a “social health crisis.” Essential workers were revealed as the heroes they always have been, providing services necessary for our survival, with health care workers the superheroes, tirelessly caring for us.
Called to witness and absorb, I painted about it all.
The stressors of sequestering and injustices also lit up the resiliency and strength found within the Human Spirit. Communities now fully awake, unite and ignite. My own community reflected on how we might better lend our unique voices justly, recreating and greeting this new world.
I still paint. This story is not done.
Image at top: Laura Waller, Museo No. 4: Museum of Modern Art, 2020, oil on linen, 36 x 36 x 1.5 in., 2020.