Pluvia Series

Pluvia is the feminine form of the Latin word for rain. The cycling of water from evaporation to cloud formation and eventual precipitation is a miraculous and unpredictable distribution system: fickle, sometimes indifferent, occasionally calamitous. It can also be very beautiful.Helios painting by Robert Spellman I've always wondered if a cloud's weight can be measured. How much water is up there? Is there enough water in a typical cumulus cloud to fill a lake or or is it just a tubful? In Colorado I've noticed that when the clouds pile up they can be significantly larger than the very large mountains below them. When the rain comes down in the vastness of the western landscape it can be like a luminous veil, catching the sunlight in infinitely various ways. The wetting of a parched summer landscape releases fragrances that could make you swoon. Everything – the birds, insects, grasses, trees – seems respond with ardent gratitude. These paintings are the workings of a Romantic mind. Like their cousins in the Helios section (see Portfolio link) these are fairly small pieces done on roughly shaped, heavily gessoed cotton muslin. The surfaces resemble scraps of hide, or skin, or bark, perhaps having spent the past century in an attic, forgotten. Some of them suggest murals on a grand scale.