Yes, the life of the still life. I haven't done one for two years but yes, how does one bring life to any painting? I may be on a panel in NY this September and the subject of life will certainly be an issue within the discussion, for me at least. I wonder if bringing life to a portrait is easier than bringing it to a still life. I mean, the people painters may have an advantage since a viewer can imagine "life" if they see any human resemblance. Human nature makes us alert to what that guy or girl is doing or about to do in the painting (and if they're going to do it for or to us!!) But certainly there are dead portraits. Anyway, I guess it's pure optical phenomena that generates most of the life in a painting. Apparently that was quite enough for the Ab Ex painters. But I think I want to "possess" objects or people or a moment in the landscape so I want to grasp it's tactile identity as a part of the pleasure of it's company. I have no clear idea why. Perhaps it's a matter of feeling a little "cozier" than I did in the purely abstract mode. It's sort of.....How existential do I want to be? For me, Ab Ex, is in another galaxy and it can be cold out there. Yes, I thought of Morandi when looking at your still lifes and I don't know exactly why other than I believe in generational osmosis when intelligent and sensitive painters look at intelligent and sensitive ancestral painters. The deadly opposite are the paintings done by morons who are "moved" by the likes of Bob Rossi (the TV teacher/moron).and who long to make similar paintings.
Your high visual I.Q. is evident. More in response to your last email soon. I attached a jpg of Laurel Pope that I did in the 1970s. I think it still has some life.
Very best wishes, Ron