Monday, April 14, 2008
Jay DeFeo’s Makara depicts a doglike body with what seems to be like a ball in its paws at a vertical degree position. It’s as if the painting was painted was painted with the dog just lying down, and then as he finished, he turned the painting clockwise ninety degrees. Looking towards the end of the dog, or animal, it has no hind legs and the whole hind ends in a spiral. The color is dull gray, not really fitting for an emotionally unstable picture. Yet, this animal, in a human point of view looks as if it has a smile on. On the body of this animal there is what looks like scales of a fish. Looking closer at the front legs they are not legs at all but look like flippers. The ball within the paws actually look like a shell in this case. The neck of this fish like painting looks like it has gills. The long nose snout ends curving upwards. Defeo makes it seem as if there are two wavy lines coming out of the mouth maybe suggesting a tongue, or maybe air.
Looking at this picture I notice that it first looks like a fossilized dog. The swirl that the tail makes reminds me of the intricate swirl of a shellfish. The shell, or ball, in the flippers of the dog gives a sense of eternity because if one were to trace the edge of a circle, it’d never end. The swirl that the tail makes, along with the dull color, points towards this idea of antique time. This portrait sitting still in the moment in the dull color of grey or blue gives an onlooker a sense of old. The wavy streaks out of the dogs mouth looks like it lost air in the process of its own fossilization. DeFeo painted this picture to make it look like it has existed since the beginning of time, and to exist forever till the end of time.