Crystal "Kitty" Shimski interviews painter Dennis Kardon, whose exhibition Reflections on the Surface is on view at Valentine Gallery, Ridgewood, Queens, through April 3, 2016.
Asked about skill in art Kardon comments: "It is a word that has become vastly misunderstood when applied to painting. The problem with the word is that it implies an action that has been repeated so often that it becomes unconsidered, and which in painting implies not being in the moment. A flaw in spontaneity; spontaneity being the wonder of painting, both in doing it and looking at it. The wonder of a moment of human consciousness frozen in time. But one's power in painting depends on building upon certain knowledges that have been accumulated through experience and from studying other paintings, in order to express nuances of feeling. Nuances of the 'flawed fucked up truth' as you put it. Just fucking up doesn't express the truth, there has to be a yearning for grace, in order to experience the ache of its absence. And this is skill of a different order."