Saturday, October 15, 2016

Kiddie Art as Paul Klee

This is dated "April 1956" on the back (which also has a drawing on it) in my mother's handwriting. Mother gave me pencils and paints as soon as I could hold them and I made art before I could write. I didn't know anything about Paul Klee when I was three years old, but back in his era Klee was fascinated by children's art, that is, art made by children. He felt that kiddie artists had a freedom from old stale models, having never been formally trained. This picture has a strong resemblance to Klee's attempts to paint like a child, and is one of the first paintings of mine to survive. I wonder though whether my mother showed me pictures of art or her own art for me to be inspired by. If she showed me Klee images that would be a neat piece of artistic recursion: artist imitating child who is imitating artist. He's still one of my favorite artists.

Homage to Klee is pencil and watercolor on construction paper, 8 1/2" x 11", 1956.

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