Winter can take its best shot, but even the frosty old man can’t hold off thoughts of summer plein air painting. A friend and I have been talking about Greg McHuron, and what he represented as an artist and influence. He is still sorely missed. Feelings about Greg run deep.
“We honor Greg by doing what Greg loved most – going out, painting, and sharing our experience and knowledge with other people,” says my painting friend. “Painting outdoors, either with a group or on our own is the best way to honor his spirit.”
There’s talk of a grant being established in Greg’s name. I’m not up to date on how that effort is proceeding. A “massive retrospective” would be one appropriate way to honor his memory, said my friend. An appropriate arts organization might purchase a substantial portion of his work, and publish a catalog.
My friend adds: “Greg was one of the most honest and decent people I ever met. In my humble opinion, he stands shoulder to shoulder with the best artists Jackson Hole has ever seen, not to mention the best this country has ever seen, and was the finest artist in the entire area at the time of his passing. All I can do is continue to honor him by holding on to his principles and advocating them…putting some of his work into a form accessible to artists down the road would serve as a fine monument to Greg.”
Greg McHuron was principled and pure. If he suffered any professional disappointments, it did not deter him. He never let go of the courage of his convictions, all too rare these days. www.mchuronstudio.com/
Right! Not to be deterred.
“The Upside of Failure” is Culture Front’s next theme and presentation, taking place at The Rose on Wednesday, January 30th, 5:30 pm. This month, moderator Meg Daly assembles local artists Nona Yehia, Matt Daly (yes, they are related! I thought they were married when I first met them…oops!) and Ben Roth leading a discussion about the importance of not always getting it right.
And truly, if we never perceived ourselves as failing, how would we be able to judge our own work? How could we know when we’ve created exceptional art? Would our work not lose its own character, its voice and validity?
Matt Daly “gazes with a gimlet” at poetry, his art; he’s enjoying a lime-colored drink or using a workshop tool, or has a piercing way of approaching writing. Or, all three! Freedom of failure allows Daly to write better poetry. Architect Yehia embraces failure, and like a scientist (science is built on failure and sequences of experimentation) she has to ensure that her approach, designs and materials hold up. Yehia will speak about “failure as a design process.”
“To him, failure is the Big Bad Wolf at the door,” notes Meg Daly. “He can’t survive much failure in his art, yet he chooses to push boundaries and make work with uncertain outcomes because otherwise, Ben says, the artististic kernel is lost.”
Politically incorrect statement: It’s sometimes said that Jacksonites are here to escape larger urban venues, where we might have to struggle to make our mark. In fact, being here in Jackson shines a light on our creativity. We’re exotic, we live in this magnetic place, and the world’s eyes are upon us.
Free; you must be 21 or over to attend! For more information, contact Meg Daly, 307-699-7933 or at [email protected]