abstract artists

Why abstract? Some quotes and comments on abstraction, I find these useful to return to: ‘The picture is not the vehicle of meaning: it is the meaning.’ Patrick Heron.  Heron’s work stems from his belief of painting not being dependant on external references for its meaning:  the impact on the viewer is not dependant on describing the world beyond. For Heron, the meaning was in the painted surface, the all-over interconnected and unified visual field – balance of composition through colour, light and shape. The distinction between figure and ground does not exist as each colour-shape or area however large or small, is as important within the painting as any… Read More

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acrylic paints

I’ve been experimenting with acrylic paint as an alternative to oil paints. Firstly because I wanted to work more quickly, and acrylics dry in a few hours, or overnight. But also I’m attracted to the wide range of colours, and how easy these are to use thinly, as a fluid, or thicker with medium, and to add textures. For reference I’ve looked at artists who work in acrylic paint, or changed from oils to acrylics. Here are a few I’ve admired:  Helen Frankenthaler (1928–2011) changed from oils to acrylics. Best known for her works in thinned oil paints poured onto unprimed canvas so that the colour would seep into the canvas, working… Read More

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Patrick Heron at Tate St Ives

Seeing this wonderful collection of paintings by Patrick Heron, with works at this large scale and alongside each other and from different periods, with one painting relating to another: intense colour, the pleasure of following a line across the canvas, the detail of a pattern, abstraction, looking from one shape/pattern to another around the canvas – this was an intense, exciting and joyful experience.     Here are the main ideas he persued:   Unity Heron strived for a balance across the canvas, the forms and colours interconnected by their position and their visual affect together, so that each area of colour/shape ” is as important within the painting as any… Read More

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Per Kirkeby

Image: “Untitled”, 1999 Oil on canvas 78 3/4 x 118 1/8 inches 200 x 300 cm  © Per Kirkeby, Courtesy Galerie Michael Werner Märkisch Wilmersdorf, Cologne & New York Danish artists inspired by geology, whose oil paintings are notable for their organic palette. Having read his obituary this week I’ve looked at his work online – https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/art-artists/name/per-kirkeby-hon-ra and http://michaelwerner.com/artist/per-kirkeby/works I love the colours, the use of lines and scratches, sometimes abstract and other works are landscape, or possibly both within a single composition. He was a member of the New York based, international Fluxus group (Latin word Fluxus means flowing) which shared attitude rather than a movement, with experimental musicians and artists, somewhat revolutionary and anti-art.… Read More

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