Charles E. Burchfield in his own words Share Tweet

 
Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), The Moth and the Thunderclap, 1961; watercolor and charcoal on paper, 36 x 48 inches; Collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of Charles Rand Penney, 1994

Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), The Moth and the Thunderclap, 1961; watercolor and charcoal on paper, 36 x 48 inches; Collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of Charles Rand Penney, 1994

Charles E. Burchfield, Journals, September 22-24, 1962

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Sept. 22-24 – Saturday to Monday –

John and Winnie’s visit –

A thoroughly enjoyable and also “profitable” get-to-gether – Beside the pleasure of showing my pictures to someone who loves and understands them it also bolstered my self-confidence which is so often lacking; for example in radical innovations such as the “Moth and Thunderclap,” which I get a thrill from every time I look at it, but which has made me wonder, “Is this going too far into the abstract world?” John seemed “bowled over” by it in fact it probably was his favorite of the years work. When I mentioned my concern that it might seem like a capitulation to the abstract mode, he argued it was nothing of the sort, but seemed derived directly from nature. So it turned out again and again.

The sessions in the studio lasted until today noon (24th) –

We picked out about 16 medium to large works. Seven 1917’s – Four large drawings; some smaller drawings and a couple small water-colors made several years ago –

One of his enthusiastic selections pleased me especially – this was the enlarged version of the 1918 “Black Houses” [a tracing made of a projected “reconstructed” version (which included the original 1918 water-color]. When it came to the question of what date to put on it, he suggested no date at all.

Saturday noon – a snack at Creams
“              night – Dinner at “The Old Orchard”
Sunday night –      “        “ “The Prime Rib”
Monday noon – snack at Creams

It rained almost all day Saturday and Sunday night and it was uncomfortably chilly – But Sunday it cleared off, and it was clear all today, and warmer –

Sunday evening we had Mart and Hand over for awhile (Mart brought some rhubarb from a friend and she brought along an enormous rhubarb leaf that measured 24” from base of leaf to top, + 28” wide – (I am going to try to preserve it somehow -)

They (John + Winnie) left at 2:00 from the Central station.

The balance of the afternoon I spent in measuring pictures, determining sizes of boxes etc. While I was doing this, and just about finished, Jim Halgendorf appeared in the doorway – He had flown to Rochester, picked up a specially equipped car (Corvair with some sort of jet drive) and was driving it to Cleveland for his company –

He only stayed an hour, then went to see Mart + Hank a few moments before going to C.

Now this evening my mind is fermenting with ideas, and things I want to do in the studio –

End of day music – Sonata’s High Castle and Molnar – (which I call our domestic “theme music” – which I like to play after a trip, or some interruption to bring us back to our real life -) Played it twice to make sure!

Charles E. Burchfield, Journals, September 22-24, 1962

 

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