The reason that this piece is called California Angel might be quite obvious to someone familiar with both tropical fish and Amish quilts. I don’t know if those two things go hand-in-hand, but since fish don’t have hands, it doesn’t matter.
The background – that is to say the part of the painting behind the Angelfish and beneath the Angelfish – is based on a square frequently used in Amish quilts called a California Sunset Star. The highly stylized angelfish is based on a not so highly stylized actual angelfish.
My Fish on Quilts paintings are playful visual metaphors for human beings, in bodies, on earth. They are “fish out of water” just as we are “fish out of water,” mysterious ineffable beings of consciousnesses navigating physical life by way of taking up residence in an animal body and, at the level of the Spirit Self, we are all probably just about as comfortable existing in bodies as a fish would be on a quilt.
Still, it’s beautiful, life… dare I say it… breathtaking.