Purple and Green

By Paul Pedulla | December 23, 2020

In 2020, my studio became the only place I could escape the stress of the pandemic. I’d paint joy for hours, often beach cottages and sweeping ocean views. I’d forget about the troubled world outside my door.

Then came the George Floyd murder in late May. My emotional response drew me back to my studio as the summer began. But this time I had to express in a painting my yearning for the healing of humankind. I did not know what would come out on my canvas.


Paul Pedulla, “Purple and Green”, acrylic on canvas, 24”x24” (2020)


I started by covering the entire canvas with white paint. As I progressed, all I could think about was a “whitewash.” Do we routinely cover up race problems? Do police always get away with abuse of non-white people? With each coat of white paint, I had a distressing emotional reaction.

When I was ready to paint the subject, I was calmer. Now I simply wanted to express love. I needed to paint unity over the whitewash. Literally. And the image had to be abstract, like a dream. A dream where people are equal, all worthy of love. A world where the only color difference between two people is the color of their shirts, the shirts that were already taking shape on my canvas. The title suddenly dawned on me, much like an epiphany.


Copyright © 2020 Paul Pedulla


Share this blog post:
Posted in


  1. Tanya Hayes Lee on December 23, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    Thank you, Paul, for sharing your thoughts and feelings during this incredibly difficult time. And, especially, thanks for sharing your work.

    • Paul Pedulla on December 24, 2020 at 10:11 am

      Thanks so much, Tanya. Your response means a lot to me and it’s an honor for me to share “Purple and Green” and the story behind it.

  2. linda Crossland on December 24, 2020 at 2:37 pm

    Thank you Paul for sharing your heartfelt story behind your painting with us. Love “PURPLE AND GREEN” You are a treasure to all.

    • Paul Pedulla on December 24, 2020 at 2:46 pm

      Linda, thank you for your gracious comment. Reading it was as emotional for me as it was to create the painting.

Leave a Comment