Once I wanted to paint landscapes, that is, I thought that that was the best to do in painting, to capture the beauty that I saw, Hashem’s magnificent glory in Nature. And I worked in this for some time, some years. Then I saw, realized, that the brightness of the day, the depth of color, etc. (especially in Aretz HaKodesh), there is no way at all to capture such magnificence in the best of oil paints, etc., not even close. So I said: what are all these landscape painters trying to do? To show us how beautiful the world is? Open your eyes and see for yourself! You don’t need a painting.
They can come back with answers, that one is not always in the beautiful Nature, and if one has a painting in his home he can see it all the time. Or one doesn’t know how to look at things with a painter’s eye, to see the beauty and the painter organizes the beauty before you…
But the point for me was that the brilliance of the vision was impossible to translate; so for me the inspiration is lost. I came into painting because I was inspired and had no interest to continue to paint without inspiration.
And then I saw that the painters who were interested in remaining as professional artists with a career, so how did they deal with the above problem? Rather, they become artful, and make a painting that looks like it has brilliant light and color, that one will saw “wow, so beautiful is this Nature.” How do they do so? They darken people’s sight; they artfully lead people into darkness (by deceiving them with their creative talents and crafty devices) and within the darkness that they create, they reveal a light. A light which in relation to the darkness seems brilliant, but in relation to the source of the inspiration, that is to the Nature which Hashem creates, their created light is very dim , contrived and superficial.
I say: the world is in darkness as it is, and people need to be taken out of the darkness and shown the light, not to be led into deeper darkness by someone’s intention to sell you his “vision.”
Baruch Hashem, I had no desire to go in their ways. Rather, I said: Nature is for seeing, not for painting. Painting must be for something else. And I went to find what was that something else.
“Landscape Painting, Caumsett Beach, Long Island, New York.
pastel on paper.