The Four Triptychs of NFMOA
including The Ghost Girls' & Ghost Boys' Shadows Series
a book by Robert Comings
The Triptychs of Nada Farm Museum of Archetypes (NFMOA) by Robert Comings is a 44-page book containing color photographs of each of the four triptychs in their fully opened position. The triptychs served as the primary focus and elements of an installation in the old carriage house at Comings' residence. The project began January 1, 1983 and continued into the mid-1990s. Each triptych required 1.5 - 2 years to complete. Photographs of The Ghost Girls' and Ghost Boys' Shadows series, a related series of oil paintings on shaped wood panels, is included in the book. The book can be purchased by contacting Blurb.com where you can search for the book by title or the author's name.
"Since about the age of 20 I have valued intuition, dreams, visual accidents, the sub-conscious and the collective unconscious as the purest sources and nourishment for the artist. I have studied Outsider Art, Art Brut, and helped encourage outsider artists whenever I was lucky enough to encounter them as students in my various teaching jobs.
I have often joked that "I was unfortunately educated" as opposed to being lucky enough to have been "self-taught." Meaning that I was aware of and had passed through the curriculum of Western Art, and the art school/graduate school/museum/gallery/art-magazine machine, a notorious body of knowledge, preconceptions, and expectations that is very difficult to eject from the artist's studio and/or from his/her creative process. It is tantamount to losing one's innocence. Nada Farm Museum of Archetypes (NFMOA) has been the main way I have attempted to regain and maintain my innocence as an artist. This was an especially tricky maneuver since my day job during those years was spent as a full-time college art teacher. Now I no longer have or need a day job, I lived long enough to find myself retired.
NFMOA refers to a body of work, an attitude about life and art, and a way of being. The name itself came from a dream. Dreams and the dream state of mind are central to what NFMOA stands for and how I use it. Dreams provided the inspiration and guidance for almost all that is contained in the Triptychs installation.
NFMOA is, in a way, a dada manifesto. It helps me remain detached and reminds me to beware of preconceptions.
The Ghost Girls' and Ghost Boys' Shadow Series
The Triptychs were inspired by an epic dream on New Year's Eve, 1983. The next two decades were filled with creation of the triptychs and their offspring. The Ghost Girls' and Ghost Boys' Shadow series are all the children of the Triptychs.
The book includes a description of my creative process including how I used decalcomania to build hallucination fields so that I could discover or find the paintings as opposed to planning and then painting them. It also includes descriptions of some of the various dream elements and how they interact in the Triptychs, which are all full of stories.
That dream is still alive. I am always looking forward to my next opportunity to visit the dreamworld."
- Robert Comings
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