Write Around PAM: Rick Bartow

A vertical, rectangular, abstract painting of a bird, possibly an eagle, that takes up most of the frame. The head is painted with heavy brushstrokes in white, gold, pale pink and blue around human-like eyes. A large, black beak stretches horizontally into a grimace with reddish pigment at the corners. Under the beak is a large triangular area of blue brushwork. The body is rendered in a flat manner with paint layered, streaked, dripped and smudged creating horizontal and vertical lines in the paint. Towards the bottom, the body forks into two wing-like areas. Tan, brown, pink, gray and white make up the wing on the left, the right is primarily browns. A dark leg juts from the body of the bird to the right. The bird is shown in a mustard yellow background with visible brushwork. Areas like the upper left and right corners reveal underpainting in browns, greens and gray. The artist’s signature is at top right in blue.

Writing continues to be a powerful way to engage with, and be inspired by, visual art. This week, we invite you to spend some time with Quiet One by Rick Bartow and see what stories it evokes for you. Before or after you write, take some time to learn about Bartow’s life and art.⠀

We have some prompts to help you get started. You can choose one, both or follow your own adventure. Set a timer for 12 minutes and just keep the pen moving.

I spread my wings… / Under the stars…

Writing in community is powerful. We are grateful to our longtime partner Write Around Portland for the writing prompts and inspiration. You can revisit previous posts, which started in May and look for continuing weekly posts through August. Please share your work with us! @writearoundpdx @portlandartmuseum #RespectWritingCommunity#WriteAroundPAM #rickbartow

Rick Bartow, Quiet One, 2013, acrylic on panel, Museum Purchase: Funds provided by bequest of Elizabeth Cole Butler by exchange, © Courtesy of the artist and Froelick Gallery, 2014.16.1

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