All my work is painted from direct observation. My strongest
impluses have consistently been rooted in the physical world.
These impulses must prove themselves by showing up in my memory,
reappearing subconsciously; the physical tethered to the conceptual.
Starting with the earliest landscapes, I wanted to create compositions
with the strength to hold the eye and one’s attention.
That concern remains constant. Like the hunt for a needle in
a haystack, I am careful to keep myself poised and attentive
for the discovery of compelling and relevant subject matter
quietly hidden in the corners of everyday life. The paintings
progress like the construction of a house, one stick at a time,
fueled by the need to create a visual dwelling for my own contemplation.
Like a vessel, it is the space created by the structure that
is most important.
I paint with a relentless conviction to make tangible every
aspect of my subject. The surface quality and subtlety of detail,
density and space, all revealed by the feel of the light. My
palette is limited to ten basic colors and does not include
black. I use the paint thick and pasty right out of the tube.
While not apparent in reproduction, there are several layers
of this undiluted paint. My compulsion is to create a density
of surface presence that cannot be denied. As time passes, I
am ever more vigilant to keep my focus to include only what
gets at the point of interest. And under all this, the image
must work abstractly. Take away the recognizable and that is
what holds it all together.
I do believe there is something sacred and enduring in this
disciplined act of truthfulness. Somewhere in the process of
painting, a magical threshold gets crossed. I am aware as my
hand reaches across an invisible line into a timeless place
and I am transported to another state of being.
- Sandra Mendelsohn Rubin