patternsthatconnect

abstract art, a systems view

Now that is scale!

with 3 comments

Yesterday, I was thinking about reducing the scale of my work from a modest 4′ x 4′ to a prudish 4″ x 6″. I think I have noticed a trend towards working on a smaller scale in painting. Perhaps in times of ecomomic downturn it is to be expected. Not for Clare Woods, whose gigantic abstract landscapes can be seen at Hepworth, Wakefield until 29 January 2012.

You can see the connection to Barbara Hepworth in the landscape and figure references, figures that is of stone, “natural” sculpture. The paintings seem to explore the relationship between abstraction and figuration, the way that we read into “abstract” objects like rock formations, images of human forms, and the way that we can also see a represented form as an abstract one (“before a paintings is anything else it is first and foremost a blank surface covered with colours in varying patterns” – J.A.M Whistler).

It is difficult not to read this as a scull,

and am I right to see it as a reference to that particular anamorphic skull in The Ambassadors by Holbein?

And though there are unambigous references to rock formations and their fugural associations here, this painting asserts itself first and foremost as …. etc etc

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Written by Andy Parkinson

January 8, 2012 at 8:45 am

3 Responses

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  1. Very thought provoking for me personally, as I’ve noticed twice now (Tuesday) when I set out to paint non-representationally, they tend towards abstract landscapes…

    zorgor

    January 9, 2012 at 5:07 am

  2. really love this work! it is figuration for me , just with things left unsaid. Inspiring stuff!

    deanmelbourne

    March 20, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    • I agree with you Dean, about the figuration. As well as what’s unsaid are there things said that can only be said with paint? Whist I think there is a lot going on that is paint rather than landscape it does also seem less abstract than say Hepworth (?)

      Andy Parkinson

      March 21, 2012 at 7:43 pm


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