The focus of investigation involves juxtaposing the unpredictable use of paint against the ‘rehearsed mark’. Playing with compositional ideas, which are anti gravitational, or have a sense of displacement attempts this. Previously, collage acted as a formal framework to compositional ideas. Now, spontaneous, yet considered compositions are fabricated from imagination. Masked areas allow this spontaneity within that frame, and once removed the viewer is denied from total chaos and brought back to the thought-out composition.
The changing scales of brushstrokes establish breaks from the rest of the painting. The motifs become devices to create a tension. The flowers, birds and insects are organic, colourful forms, which in paint create intimate painterly encounters. They also have a particular place in the history of painting and as traditional subjects, but become awkward because of how they are composed. Pace is dictated through the gestural qualities operating over a large surface and generating an energy. Some marks appear accidental, but others are highly controlled, sometimes rehearsed.
Traditionally, gold has been used in painting symbolically and narratively. I use it as a mechanism. The floating singular geometric shape demands exploration but in a controlled order. It isn’t a statement of value; it is the reflective surface’s disruption of the painted surface that is exploited. The gold belongs to a different plane and confuses our ability to place the objects represented on the picture plane.
Abstraction placed with figuration becomes awkward. One is an illusion and the other is a recognizable form. Using paint monochromatically allows colour to be exaggerated and is complicated amongst the figurative aspect.
Illusionism is evident throughout the body of work. Pictorial spaces are constructed by layering and by shifting perspectives, like Baroque elements of painting. By using a luminescent initial layer, the classical technique, imprimatura, is adapted, heightening awkwardness. Glazes are applied untraditionally but still with the same function, which is to amplify light and establish drama and theatricality.
In the 1980’s, postmodernism collided a diverse mix of influences in an exciting rejection of barriers. I am using similar points of reference (the Baroque, figuration, abstraction, monochrome) but to cross-refer and compose a deliberate and symbiotic awkwardness that for me reflects what it is to paint and to look at paintings in the 21st century.