Tangle, egg tempera on calfskin parchment, 4 7/8 x 3 1/2 inches
This painting, because of the details of the tangled chain, was tough going at times. I think of the chain as a mass of texture in the painting, which contrasts with the flat red and green planes, but unless it is painted with clarity and conviction, it doesn't work with the whole. It points out the odd nature of my paintings: they aim for an abstract expression of color, shape and form, but they also must have precision of execution to create the tension I find most interesting between the thing and the representation of it, or, to put it other ways, illusion and flatness, reality and abstraction.
(keep in mind that this detail is way over the actual size)