Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Resilience of Age

The Resilience of Age is a 24x12 oil done from life by Shirley Fachilla.
In 1951, Andrew Wyeth painted Trodden Weed. Consisting of a pair of elegant boots in mid-stride crushing a slender weed underfoot, he called it a self-portrait.
Shortly before painting Trodden Weed, Andrew had undergone a life-threatening operation; afterward, he had taken to walking about the countryside in a pair of old, but elegant, boots to rebuild his strength. He said that in his unsteadiness, he realized how often we all unknowing, blindly crush and trod living things underneath our stride.
My question for you is: in this “self-portrait” was Andrew the pair of boots or the resilient weed being crushed underfoot?
As you might guess from the title of my painting shown above, I think Andrew was the weed which far from being obliterated, sprang back to live another day. Andrew Wyeth lived to be 91 years old.    


  1. I just finished reading Merriman's book on Wyeth. Have you read it?

  2. Very nice! The painting really makes you stop and take a second look.

  3. Fascinating information, Shirley. You are superb about connecting your beautiful paintings to a real life situation. Your painting is soft and shows dignity in infirmity.

  4. I'm fascinated by the rim light on the face. Gives a "heavenly" touch to this distinguished man. Love it.

  5. Great Art here Shirley!
    Also great question!
    I am not sure what Wyeth was thinking. However I am very sure of the value of life and living it well. Your art and messages are always an inspiration to me.
    Paint on!
    Your art buddy,


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Pieces by (clockwise from left to right) : Susan Harlan, Janet Garner, Shirley Fachilla, Mike Martino and Topper Williams. So many ...