I’ve always felt that my own paintings should speak for themselves. Words can point to what you should look at and create a context for what you see, but I don’t think that anyone can really communicate in words what works of art communicate any more than they can create in words the taste of a good wine. The experiences of – say - a painted, translucent red - of delicate lines and bold shapes - of dramatic, metaphoric images - are like - well - the tang of garlic in a good, kosher hot dog - if we can imagine such experiences as being more serious - more profound - than pleasurable. They have to be ‘tasted’ to be known. It is not an intellectual process, although some art critics have made their careers trying to describe and explain it. The meaning – the significance - of a painting is in the work itself - in the personal responses to the aesthetic and metaphoric qualities of the image. This does not mean that paintings don’t embody meanings beyond such intrinsic qualities of the paintings. Although paintings can be about any personal experience, I believe that important paintings should be about something important - about life - the human condition - about the world we live in, or, in my case, the world we used to live in – even about art itself. There is something unique about artists who create with passion, who write - or paint - or compose works of art that express the intensely human experiences they share with others – of love and hate - of beauty and ugliness – of nature and society - of divinity and belief – of the imaginings of our mind - of memory - of loss - of mortality and death - all those corny, clichéd sentiments which just happened to be meaningful to us. And it may be that those visions are more true and real to us than the objective truths of science; at least, they touch us in ways that science never can. I would like to think that this is true about me.
Leopold Segedin has been painting since 1942. In a 75 year career he has painted myriad subjects including the bible & mythology, musicians, games, trains, Maine & Michigan landscapes, and self-portraits, but his focus has always returned to Chicago.
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