Willard Dixon "Meditations"
February 2 — 26, 2005

Over the past decade, Willard Dixon’s still life work has been dedicated to a steady paring down of form. The fewer elements in a painting, the more significant their relationship becomes. Because of the sparse nature of these paintings, Willard finds himself spending a good deal of time contemplating their visual and emotional possibilities. The actual execution of the painting is balanced by this kind of active inaction. The objects which appear seem balanced in a relatively empty though energized space, each depending on the other for the particular nature of their existence. In Zen Buddism they speak of “form and emptiness” as two aspects of one reality. As a long time student of Zen and related cultures, Willard Dixon is drawn to an image which embodies the feeling one may have in meditation; a feeling of calmness, stability and possibility.  Writes Willard, “The fleeting specificity of the forms that we see in the ‘objective’ world, generates in me a feeling of stillness behind the visible, something unchanging and supporting which is also present in me. I suspect this point of convergence is the real content of my work.” In the work of Willard Dixon, space seems to open and clarify, revealing things just as they are in a complete and satisfying way.