I don't remember how I was first exposed to Cy Twombly, I just know the effect. There was my painting style BT and AT. BT (Before Twombly) I thought I was too obsessive with my use of bright palettes. I felt foolish with my 'color outside the lines' style. My swoops, random lines and constant use of text felt unrefined and too 'young.' And then Mr. Twombly came along and rocked my freakin world. AT (After Twombly) I let the writing flow, the drips fall and my imagination soar. His colors exploded across his larger-than-life canvases and unlocked something inside my frustrated paint strokes that was dying to come out.
There have only been a sacred few times when I've 'found' an artist that speaks to me and fundamentally changes my work. Twombly is at the very top of that list. I'm sure there are hordes of folks (and critics) that don't 'get' his work. I mean, he had to defend his work as "childlike but not childish." But for the rest of us, he's a game changer!
A few more of my favs: