Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Week 32, Day 219- “Still Life”

“Still Life”

Written by Joe Janes


219 of 365


Marcus, 40s

Art Dealer D-Bag, 30s

Art Ho, 20s

(This is a silent scene. If set to music, it might be something similar to the lounge-y instrumental “Objet D’Amour” by Combustible Edison.)

(Lights up on Marcus standing before a blank canvas in t-shirt and jeans with paint and pallet in hand. He stares intently at the canvas. He hesitantly puts the brush close to the canvas, but backs off. He does this a few times. He turns away, takes a few steps, takes a few breaths, turns and goes back to the canvas. He grabs a different brush. He approaches the canvas, practicing his stroke first. He is inches away from putting his brush to the canvas when he just barely touches it. He quickly drops his brush and pallet and cleans off the paint with a rag and paint thinner. He looks around his studio. He sees an empty chair. He moves it and places it where he would if he had a model to paint. He goes back to his canvas, unhappy with the angle, he moves the chair. He returns to the canvas. He moves the chair once more. He returns to the canvas. Still unhappy, he sits in the chair. He sits in it various different ways. While sitting there, he sees a single flower in a vase on small table on the other side of the room. He moves the easel over to the chair and sits down to paint the flower from there. He paints furiously, passionately. He pours his heart and soul into capturing the essence of this flower on his canvas. Finished. Spent. Exhausted. He sits back satisfied with himself. He takes another look at his work. He looks concerned. He picks up the canvas and walks around the room looking at it from different angles in different light. He turns the easel out and sets it back down. It looks like crap. He turns to the flower. He takes it out of the vase and sets it on the table. He picks up a hammer from the floor and beats the piss out of the flower. He holds the flattened, smattered mess up toward the canvas to compare. Satisfied, he returns the beaten flower to its vase. The art dealer comes in with a tall beautiful woman at his side. They are both dressed in Italian chic with sunglasses. The artist is nervous, but happy to see him. The woman stays in the doorway as the art dealer looks at the canvas and is aggressively unimpressed. The art dealer turns and stops in his tracks at the sight of the flower. He is in awe of its magnificence. He delicately picks it up and regards it with reverence. He continues to revere the flowery remains as he walks out the door. The artist follows, but is stopped by the woman who tosses coins on the floor to distract the artist. It works. She exits. The artist scoops up the coins and puts them in his pockets. He looks at the painting with a mixture of disgust and humiliation. He picks up the hammer and starts beating on the canvas as lights fade.)