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The Baltic Sea Series

The BALTIC SEA: Carnival/Militia is structured on mood more than anything else. It’s the mood of the Baltic coastline from northeast Germany to Poland, Lithuania, Latvia—the areas in which Günter Grass has set his ‘Danzig Trilogy,’ especially the mighty third book, Dog Years. The entire trilogy is interesting because of its roiling, dismantled-exchanged-reconstructed imagery and very little plot so that with these demonstrative paintings there is no need to decipher story or plotline but, rather, a wholesale and intimate frolic over the land, into villages and carnivals, into the hearts and minds of real peasant or proletarian personalities: the down-trodden, inane, the followers, plus the rare—but usually unrecognized—heroes. The Danzig Trilogy is not specific about its depictions of large conglomerates of time or place—just as in art theory, especially today, histories and places are redistributed in a manner that slides like seismic shifts on top and inside earth’s surfaces—and our understanding—such as time-place lurches in “Recto-Verso.” The Teutonic Order (late 1100s—1466) or “Militia” roamed across the Baltic Sea area like the Mafia, or as harbingers to the Third Reich in 1933 sporting similar characteristics. What is most crucial to the painting series, The Baltic Sea, is compassion; where the viewer’s vision settles upon the Baltic site or the carnival worker with a necessity for the (other) self as dignity including the self (and other) with exceptional value. It is an import-ant trait given us by art, literature, film, and the accumulated strides in history functioning as refined re-readings and redescriptions, thorough reassessments—and as such, gain more creative capabilities that help align the actual caring of art viewers, readers of good literature, watchers of film—to the deftly made work of patience, skepticism, and subtle absurdities.

 Carol M Dupré . Fine Art . Painting


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     Photos by Jerry Sitrin