It was a friend of mine that asked me if I had heard of GOOGLE Earth. This was back in 2007. It was another of many new-fangled technogadget, technologies that once again I had no idea about. I looked it up, followed the steps to download this “thing”. Once I had managed to maneuver through the steps, a 3D animated Earth popped up in the center of my Apple screen.
After figuring out what to do, I entered my own address and the Earth started to grow, rotate and zooming in on Southern California and to my amazement, to my condo building. A feeling of awe came over me, but also a little bit of fright as well. This new dealie-bob seemed a little too familiar with my life, my private life. Just the same I could not stop looking at my screen. For hours I bopped around at people’s homes that I knew and even my sister’s home up north that I had never been to.
Fifty years after Sputnik, these little moons finally found there way into our rooftops. There were thousands of little man made gadgets orbiting our blue planet and many had eyes and very good ones at that.
As a citizen of Earth, I was intrigued, as an artist, I was inspired. As I traveled the planet from my cozy home , shades drawn, I saw the world in a new way. From satellite images the world lost perspective. I don’t mean perspective as in view point or philosophy. I mean, literally, perspective. Perspective that I learned at art school. Artistic perspective given to us by the masters , the geniuses in Florence Italy in the fifteenth century, THAT perspective. From miles up there are no visible vanishing points no perspective as Filippo Brunelleschi taught us almost six centuries ago.
The next day I did my first painting inspired by satellite photography, “FREEWAY”.
It was completely made up, I did not want to look at anything. It was as Claude Monet once said, I don’t paint what I see, I paint what I see when I close my eyes”. So, this is a collection of that spirit. Except for two paintings (pages 13 and 14) which were commissions and are based on real places, the work is all fictitious places.
I wanted to also evoke a little of Edward Hopper, Edward Hopper from high above that is. With each image I used long shadows to create a bit of the melancholy that is instilled in Hopper’s work.
I decided to make them square, each of the paintings on these pages are two feet square, on wood with acrylic paint. I then came up with a name for them, Plane Air came to me as I was falling asleep, that alpha state just before you drop off completely. I come up with my best ideas during this tiny window of creative meanderings. The play on words is missed by some, but then, that’s the way of art , humor and life itself.
Rey Bustos 2013