"[...] I was working with a reduced range of color and value, and a pervasive quiet. Fresco color is how Lennart Anderson described my color. It was a kind of tonality I had to have, unlike the chromatic qualities in my painting from observation in undergraduate school when I was pretty much matching the color of the setups we were working from. Over the years the color in my paintings has gained in depth and richness. The quiet I had in my paintings back then, however, has remained always. I had to have that quiet. It was something that all the painters I loved most had in common. I wanted to try to paint a silence that was more evident, or more subtly intrusive, than a sense of stillness. I thought about it as a piercing silence. Could a silence have the same power as a scream, I wondered. I was aware of Francis Bacon’s screaming Pope paintings that had grown out of a still from Sergei Eisenstein’s 1925 film, The Battleship Potemkin. I wanted to understand better what a painting could do to create what we might perceive as a sound, or as complete silence. I made a few small paintings of a head with its mouth open, as though screaming, but without the sound such an image suggests. And then I realized it was the painting itself that could become the silent scream I was thinking about, and not the head of a man painted as though screaming. It was a heightened sense of stillness that I wanted, that could be there when all the elements in a painting are carefully considered and repainted as many times as it takes for them to feel right in shape and color and in their interrelationships with one another."


Excerpt from Alan Feltus' memoir.

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