"I was 26 in 1972 and managed to scrounge my way over to Boston on a Harvard Scholarship for a year. Wide-eyed, I was up for America and its exuberance. I brought with me, coming from a more reserved culture, at least before Damien Hirst, my tightly woven paintings. But I was up for it for sure: the freedom, the extremes (some of whichI don’t like now: like guns) and pretty soon I saw some images of paintings that I loved. They were by an older lady: she was 31.
They and she fascinated me. I naturally thought of the disconnected scribblings in paint of Cy Twombly, who’s a wonderful artist. But Joan’s marks were not European, not grey, not refined, not pushed through the scrim of culture in order to get out into the world. Joan’s were brash, Joan’s were neon, Joan’s were American..."