The Brooklyn Rail

NOV 2014

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NOV 2014 Issue
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Sound of the Sky

My friend Mary Ann asked me to write some words on translating art.

Barbara Campisi, “Morning” (2014). Watercolor pencil on paper and mylar, 6 × 6 ̋. Courtesy of artist.

To me, translating art and translating nature are not so very different.

This was preceded by my brief description of a cacophonous sunset:

Each part of the sky was changing more quickly than I could capture in words or in the sticky scribbles of my inky watercolor pencils; thunderous pink streaked the cloudy southern sky, and as I looked to the north, to the dimming dark blue, fluorescent pink clouds transported remaining bits of sunset. Just then, in the west, a luminous sliver at the bottom of the sky would not be quieted by the dark greenish violety mass descending upon it, with smoldering alizarine crimson subtly glowing from within.

Breathless, my stamina fading, my ears rang from the cacophony of colors.

Finally, the wisps of pink in the south blew past as a cool, even cerulean eclipsed them and the sliver of brightness in the west was devoured by the dark mass. In the north, a violety blanket doused the pink travelers, and the sky grew quiet.

A buzzing white film then enveloped the foreground, and the opaque water came alive.  Blip.  Blip.  Blip. Flip. Flop. Slurp.  Blip.  Jumping fish.


Barbara Campisi

BARBARA CAMPISI is a visual artist living and working in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. She holds a BS in Fine Art from Skidmore College and an MA in painting. She has lived and worked in Brooklyn, NY since 1991.


The Brooklyn Rail

NOV 2014

All Issues