Zen Spot #7 - Mindfulness, meditation and the Erased de Kooning February 24, 2018 00:05
Erased de Kooning
Erased de Kooning Drawing is an artwork work created by Robert Rauschenberg. The final work appears to be an almost blank piece of paper. Created in 1953 by erasing a drawing he obtained from Willem de Kooning, the work is powerful and sublime, requiring an in-person viewing to fully experience its subtle brilliance.
Grafitti in Philadelphia
Street art is proof that some voices refuse to be ignored. They will sing anywhere and at any time, like tree roots forcing their way through the joints of an underground pipe in search of water. Throughout Philadelphia, there is a group of unknown street artists who leave artwork behind on street signs, in train stations, on park benches and, in some cases, simply leaning against a curb.
Some of the work is good. Time was taken to create a piece of durable substance. Other works are spontaneous, fleeting and fragile. Rain would nearly destroy them and perhaps that’s the point. A third group is that of the accidental. All over the city, people leave behind beauty, weirdness and a wonderful little piece of themselves.
It’s hard to tell what the street art image above was, with the assumption that the image was painted over as part of an anti-graffiti program. Found pasted to an underpass just east of the corner of 5th and Callowhill Streets, it makes a confounding statement.
The work's technique was clearly inspired by Banksy, the world famous and anonymous street artist. Usually I loathe direct rip-offs of any creative work, especially those that contain fear or tentativeness. I believe in stealing big. The fact that the artwork was created elsewhere and pasted to the wall, instead of painting it directly on the wall, makes me cringe.
The rolled beige paint used to camouflage the work is pure Dada. It’s benign, cheap and lazy. A bureaucrat initiated the program, a committee chose the color and a hourly laborer painted the wall with little care.
Not all art means something and, when it does, it doesn’t always mean something important. This artwork does mean something.
I love the correlation between the emergent concept on which Erased Dekooning was created and the destructive techniques of the rolled beige. Because of its physical location, this Zen Spot can be loud at times but, for the most part, the noise is white.
Wait for August, find the spot and sit for a moment…or two.
An artist, entrepreneur and writer walking the Buddhist path, his art focuses on the Dharma Wheel. The four wheels shown above are among 600 he has created over the course of his career. Each has a unique story. If you’d like to read more about an individual wheel or purchase a framed 20" x 20" ready-to-hang print, visit SilkDharma.com.