It’s an interesting thought when you are dating someone, you have to accept the reality that this is either going to be the person that you end up spending the rest of your life with, or there will be an end, sooner or later, benign or tragic. Several months ago I went through a breakup, and it wasn’t easy or pleasant. I was devoted and looked forward to the idea of him and I growing grey to the end together, but alas the latter conclusion is what was realized, my first heartbreak. Coping with the breakup, I turned to my second greatest love after art as medicine- movies and animation. I watched film after film, story after story, and this whole concept really stayed with me for weeks on end, and still does. What was came forth in my works are juxtaposing and contrasting conclusions to love stories.
I have always loved Looney Toons (Pepé Le Pew being my favorite character). I was watching a marathon while I was coping with the breakup- the cheery opening tune with the Warner Brothers logo always put a smile on the face, and of course the epic “That’s all folks!” conclusion at the end of every episode. I couldn’t help but draw a parallel between that iconic end title and the real life ending a relationship that I was going through, ending of an episode if you will. “That’s the end of that!” ended up becoming a melancholy and almost sarcastic admission of defeat, the moment when you throw your hands in the air and accept the fate to where things have come to.
One of my favorite films of all time is Baz Lurhmann’s Romeo and Juliet, the classic tale retold with Lurhmann’s fire and unconventional approach. Of course their love story ends when it dies away with them at the end, but does it really? A love like that seems to span through time, affecting anyone and everyone who hears it, moved by that never ending, you and I against the world, eternally yours, love. The Hawaiian style shirt that Romeo wears a majority of the film is iconic- with its delicate Japanese style floral pattern against the rich navy color. I came up with the concept of “FOREVER” by creating my own Japanese inspired floral pattern and adequately using the word “forever” to apprehend that same idea of everlasting love. It was an interesting experience for me working on this painting, I spent many hours with it and my mind was on a hamster wheel thinking about all these things. In the end completing it, I feel that this is work of hope- hope that perhaps one day something like this could be found and shared, to really know what “Forever” means.
As part of the Laluzapalooza 2017 show at La Luz de Jesus gallery in Los Angeles.
"That's the end of that!" 12" x 12" x 1" (30.4 cm x 30.4 cm x 2.5 cm) Acrylic on panel. 2017.
"FOREVER" 16" x 16" x 1.5" (40.6 cm x 40.6 cm x 3.8 cm) Acrylic on panel. 2017.
Please contact Matt Kennedy for inquries- firstname.lastname@example.org
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