January 28, 2011

Foreclosed Hope

I posted this several or more years ago when I was struck by the painting of the elderly people being 'dispossessed', and I cringed that I would ever be in that circumstance. But years have passed and it seems the word dispossessed has been replaced by another terrible word that has untold stories and ramifications behind it. The word we are all familiar with in our current affairs is 'Foreclosed'.

By Jim Kittelberger

When I have the opportunity to view paintings, rather in person, or in various media, books or the internet, I thoroughly enjoy it. One thought that occurs to me if I am taken by a painting and look at it deeply is that it’s not merely because it is enjoyable to my eyes, and touches something that I can’t explain inside of me, but I also am thinking or wishing I suppose is closer, that I would have had a modicum of the talent needed to be able to create something out of nothing on a white blank space that could move the viewer to an extent they would talk about it, or write about it, perhaps years or centuries later. And then sometimes I run across a painting that I can’t stop looking at. It digs further into my brain and I become part of the painting or want to know what happened to the subjects. In this painting by Mervin Jules 1912-1994 painted in 1937, it caused a flutter of anxiety to occur. What did these poor people do? The title of the painting is DISPOSSESSED, so it is obvious that they have entered the world of the homeless in a large city. It is also important to note the age of the subjects, and to realize that in 1937, there were no shelters that would take them in. Perhaps they have children that would take them in, but judging by their meager belongings, they were receiving no assistance from any children they may have had, so that would seem to be out. The depression was still going on at that time and President Roosevelt had not created any programs yet that would help them. The artist Mr. Jules has gone on to his reward in heaven, so we can’t explore his mind about his creations. What then do we do in situations like this where we become empathetic, but cannot reach in to help. Our minds will have to protract their dilemma onward and just hope that all turned out well. This is the power of putting a little paint on a canvas. It can move people in ways you never think about.

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