“Vortex Bali Mona” 1995


Mixed media on paper. 22″ x 30″.

I had just spent a couple weeks in Bali.  In front of the temples I saw many sculptures of naked people.  While Indonesia is a Islamic country Bali is mostly Hindu/Buddhist.  In recognition of the large numbers of Muslim tourist in Bali the genitals of the naked sculptures are usually covered with a black & white checkered cloth.  I was told this was symbolic of the pair of opposites.

If you look closely above the vortex you will see Mona Lisa’s hands and behind them DuChamp’s coffee Grinder.  Somehow I have an invention in my mind of Leonardo’s that looks like a funnel made of wood like a barrel.  So after doing the vortex I threw in the coffee grinder thinking that there is some connection between these two artists.  I was told by an art historian that Leonardo did only seven major paintings in his lifetime, and that he was more of a thinker than a painter (you know there was a saying  dumb as a painter).  Art historians I have known won’t admit it but – I think – they think – that a thinking painter – is an oxymoron.

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