The Art of David Wiley | Colors Of The Roundtable-Episode 4 | Scene4 Magazine | August 2016 |

David Wiley



          It was only a week now before commencement of work on the great new Project, a 40 x 95 foot mural, which, it was hoped, would go some ways toward saving the world. The Conductor and all the Knights and Ladies of the Round Table, in fact all the Colors in the Kingdom of Color, were aware of what was about to happen, and for many it had become a preoccupation. The Conductor had been waking up in the middle of the night, dazzled by things he had seen in his dreams. All the heads of the Families, and the celebrities among those Families, had been bulking up in preparation, and certain Colors, like Lady Vermilion and Lady Cobalt, were in training to give themselves that radiance which made them so admired. They were doing what they could to get ready, and of course the heads of the Families were still being inundated with appeals from Family members they had never heard of. Everyone wanted a role in the big Project. The Ladies and Knights of the Round Table did their best to plant suggestions in the mind of the Conductor, a subtle and evanescent process. If Lady Violet, for example, wanted to obtain work for her distant cousin, Sir Lichenlint, she would first have to catch the eye of the Conductor, then while he was gazing at her in admiration, bring up the image of Sir Lichenlint, using all of her cleverest charms and guiles in such a way that not only would the image of Sir Lichenlint enter the Conductor’s consciousness, it would do so with such a favorable impression that the Conductor might well find a role for this habitually out-of-work Knight.

          These subliminal suggestions made by the heads of the Families very often failed, but now and then they worked with great success. Lady Ternsegg, for one, had risen from obscurity to fame this way. She did have the advantage of being a member of Lady Blue’s Family. All the Colors and all the Conductors were well aware of Lady Blue’s persuasiveness. Lady Ternsegg turned out to be a shooting star, whose fame was considerable but shortlived. Now there was only a nostalgic memory of her, but at least she had been given the experience of being in the limelight. She was thankful for this period in her life because it had given her the wisdom to understand how meaningless fame and celebrity really are. Lady Ternegg now felt a strange kind of sorrow for the Ladies and Knights of the Round Table, who were constantly in the public eye.

          The system of communication between the Colors and the Conductors was nebulous, chaotic and, in short, very hard to pin down. There were many mysteries of the senses involved. It was said that many Colors produced a scent that had the power to hold a Conductor in thrall. Many Conductors over the centuries had admitted to hearing music of various kinds while admiring certain Colors. No one knew exactly what went on between the Colors and the Conductors. All that was known for sure was that they needed each other, and that it was not only to their benefit, but to the world’s benefit as well, if they could all work together with as much empathy and compassion as possible, inspiring and stimulating each other all the while to bring out the best in everyone. Only in this way would the Projects carry enough power and influence to save the world.

          The Conductor was faced with a host of questions, or, as he liked to call them, “things of the imagination yet to be resolved.” These things of the imagination involved whatever Colors the imagination wanted to include. The job of the Conductor was to put everything together into a workable form whose impact would be enhanced by every square inch of this 547,200 square inch mural. In the smaller Projects it was the Conductor’s habit to use a palette limited to the Colors of the Round Table and a few of their close relatives. A giant mural required a different approach. It had to embrace much more than a few selected things. It had to be grand, in the sense of being all-inclusive, without losing its focus in the grandiosity. A nearly impossible balancing act was essential to the success of the Project. Deciding which Colors to use, where to use them, and how much of each one to use, was, in itself, a task that needed such bold yet subtle powers of discrimination it made the Conductor shudder a little, even though considerations of Color were his forte, and what he loved most about his Projects. Now, on the eve of his most adventurous Project ever, the Conductor could not afford an ambiguous or indecisive connection with any of the twelve Families. He wanted them all to be happy.

          The dilemma lay in the problem of which Family relatives to select. The Conductor was fully conscious of the thousands of little-known Colors who lived in the Kingdom of Color, most of whom he had never used, and many whose names he had never seen or heard. The Colors of the Round Table were always trying to promote some of their relatives, using the typical roundabout methods of persuasion. And the Conductor, who faced more than one dilemma, had to keep an open mind and the receptiveness required for the purposes of exploration and experimentation, which were the most compelling parts of the process. There were almost too many things the Conductor had to think about, and act on, in addition to maintaining a state of passion and clarity. The most important thing for everyone was to be in a healthy and energetic condition. The Conductor and the Colors would be performing an unknown dance they would invent as they went along, √©lan, and they had to be in top shape, with all senses functioning at optimum. How best to prepare for this dance had been a subject of discussion among the Conductors and the Colors for many centuries. There did not seem to be an easy answer. Conductors and Colors all prepared themselves in different ways. And of course it depended too on the nature of the Project they were getting ready for. Their work wa essentially individualistic, thus there were no standards or rules, which was one of the things they all loved about it. Now and then a Conductor would try to impose rules, but no one took this very seriously, especially those with the most experience and imagination. No, the best Conductors operated on a different principle. They let the world teach them, then they taught themselves, using a very thorough process of discrimination.

          One of the dilemmas the Conductor had to cope with was the pattern of dispersing the Colors he had chosen. Having dealt with them on a more-or-less personal basis for many years, he felt very much in the midst of a balancing act. There were a certain number of Colors, old favorites mostly, that he knew would be used in major roles. It was all the minor roles, which were no less important, that the Conductor had to agonize over. It was a sweet kind of agony, and seemed more like a dream than a decision-making process. The selection of Colors often felt random and whimsical. The Conductor tried to convince himself that it was a part of improvisation, which is an important part of creation. There had to be, the Conductor told himself, serious motives behind these whimsical decisions.

          Then the Conductor, as he often did, leaned back in his chair, closed his eyes, and listened to the voices of the Colors, hoping, perchance, to have a visit from Lady Chameleon.

Previous Chapters of Colors of The Roundtable:


Episode 1
Chaos In The Kingdom

Episode 2
The Case of Lady Lilac and Sir Caperoot

Episode 3
The Lady Chameleon Conundrum

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Scene4 Magazine - David Wiley

David Wiley, painter-poet, exhibits throughout
California and abroad. A book about his work,
The Poetry of Color, is in progress.
To inquire about David Wiley's paintings, click here.
For more of his paintings, poetry and articles, check the

©2016 David Wiley
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August 2016

Volume 17, Issue 3

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