Sunday, December 14, 2008

Catherine Murphy - The Windsor

Catherine Murphy, The Windsor, 1999

"In Catherine Murphy's painting The Windsor (1999), the party is long over. All that remains are traces, detritus, crumbs and stains. The pale white moon of the round table curves down toward the bottom of the painting. the table is covered by damask, a fabric that is the embodiment of light and on which light flickers like sunshine in the trees. It is among the most elegant of fabrics, the heaviest and the richest, certainly deserving of a name like "The Windsor," one that evokes the tablecloth's home or former home, some grand British or Canadian inn (we imagine) or Anglophile hotel."

" So it's more disturbing than it might otherwise be to observe that the table is such a wreck, that the pure snow ground of the washed and ironed cloth has been besmirched and defiled. The crumbs and tiny chunks of bread seem crisp and clean and unserious compared with the spills and seepages that have turned the white tablecloth into a canvas on which time, experience, and (we can only hope) pleasure have completed a fairly ambitious abstract painting."

(from an article in ARTnews, October 1999, titled, "A Dirty Tablecloth, Deconstructed," by Francine Prose)

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