10 QUESTIONS FOR DAENA TITLE
1. What is different from your work than others when painting the figure now?
Everybody's art reveals their soul, their mind, their obsessions and their habits. Mine are just different from theirs.
2. How important is process versus end results?
Both are unknowable to me. I discover where I am going as I paint, a journey both beautiful and terrifying. When that actually lands me in a destination I like, the end result is very rewarding. But that doesn't always happen, so I better like the journey.
3. What is your ultimate goal when painting the figure?
To communicate and transcend
4. What do you like best about your work?
I prefer the days I think I am a genius, when every color combination expands my heart, to the days I think I am a failure who either doesn't know how to paint anything, or just ruined a previous thing of beauty with which I was momentarily entrusted.
5. What do you do you like least about your work?
I want to be freer.
6. Why the figure?
Compare paintings to movies. The ones with people in them are more interesting.
7. Which are your greatest influences?
grew up in the time of seismic social change, the late sixties/early seventies, on Long Island in a white Catholic/Jewish enclave. One day we were told to be like Betty Crocker, the next Betty Friedan. One day Marilyn Monroe, the next Twiggy. Suddenly men weren't judged by the number of their sexual conquests but by the number of orgasms they could give their partner. Every goalpost and icon mutated to its opposite. No one knew who they were or what they should be. I am still ranting about this.
8. What is your background?
Formative years roaming the museums in NYC; A Art History; lots of theatre, two decades plus in the studio
9. Name three artists you'd like to be compared to in history books.
Alice Neel, Margaret Dumas, Matisse
10. What is your favorite work in the exhibition besides your own and why?
Denise Fulton. You know the phrase, “You stole my idea! I was going to have that idea next week!”? Fulton’s painting is so close to the heart of what I would like to paint and say. Plus, it’s beautifully executed. Its many nuances of meaning and execution offer sustained and repeated viewing.