The Artist's Credo

I believe in Veronese’s golden ratio,

and ratios bronze and silver not yet discovered.

I don’t believe in the rule of thirds,

or fourths or fifths;

Stop hiding the subject. 


I believe in the isolated eye-catch,

the vagrant smudge,

the deckled edge and the swelling fibers of paper soaking in water.

I honor the vulgar hue,

the arrogant glaze,

the sacrosanct shadow.


I trust the tug of bristled brush against canvas weave

and the plastic perfection of Koons.

I live by erasure and completion, obfuscation and extraction

but never dripped paint or collage.

Irresponsibility dulls the diamond-tip of reality.


I believe that lead type

mineral spirits




and the severity of ideas

have taken five years off my life. I believe that number will grow.


I believe in coloring books and neighborhood flyers,

theme-park sand art and quilt fairs,

Rothko and Stella but not de Kooning or Warhol.

Bacon’s suffering is misplaced and Turner’s canvases too small.

In this leaking celestial world of ours,

we are the least interesting things

we can show other people.


I accept mythical whispers;

I know a thin veil hangs between

this reality and another. All art is sacred

and all creation is holy.

I don’t believe

that pictures can be true

or false,

But I do believe

in weeping at the foot of the Pietà.