"Struttin' In this Game"
I have started to look at David Batchelor’s writings on colour. There is this idea that serious art does not focus on the applied surface of colour. My work is interested in all the many facets colour has to offer. With the inherent colour of the material I use to the ones I choose to apply to my pieces. I have started using ready-made enamels used in households to construction sites for buildings. It gives the flat solid surface I’m looking at when I look at what’s in popular culture. In Chromophobia he speaks on colours that are close to pop art; “Found colours, commercial colours, industrial colours, and often bright, vulgar, modern colours in bright, vulgar, modern collisions with other bright, vulgar, modern colours.” Pg. 12
Chromophobia By David Batchelor
Struttin' In This Game piece was developed while experimenting with my collages and assemblages I use to develop larger works on canvas. Since I had this need to push my work forward into projecting into the gallery space I decided to make an assemblage for a relief painting instead of how I normally start a regular stretched canvas painting. I looked at the work of Frank Stella and his Hybrid Paintings. In the book Frank Stella Connections © 2011 by Ben Tufnell He spoke of his relief paintings: "I think of them as paintings I know they are reliefs, they are basically pictorial reliefs..I see them more as paintings because they are really meant to be seen head-on." I liked the idea of making my paintings look more object like by constructing it and placing each section however I wanted.
Also, I looked at the work of Robert Therrien in his exhibition Parasol Unit was very eye opening for me and influential in the way I want to further develop my work. I like his attention to the surfaces of his pieces and his simple but powerful reliefs made of humble materials. I speak more about his exhibition here:
After varnishing the edges of my last piece I wanted to push the quality of the surfaces forward to get a really modern feel. Stella was known for using readymade paints as well as artist Gary Hume. I find Hume's work interesting as he uses bright playful colors and he uses enamel to get a shiny finish and quality I am after in my work.
Using gloss enamel on the black background area of this piece contrasted well with the matte finish of the graphic shapes. On reflection of the development of this work is again highlighting my interest in “Popular Culture”. Investigating how and why we are so attracted to certain colours in advertising, and products and the allure to shiny new things. Investigating signage and wayfinding I was looking to get a sleek look with this relief painting to represent what I see in many objects we purchase: cars, I-phones, new appliances, gadgets, jewelry. This work developed as a relief painting with a found object is a step forward in work I’ve done previously in that I considered the shape of the canvas in the development stages, I made certain consideration in the application of paint to control how the surfaces would behave. The addition of the found object to the other pieces I’ve made is a way to ask the viewer to make other considerations. I could have painted the nob with shadows etc. but by using an actual nob that can’t be used in it’s normal way it brings other associations with it and I like the idea of engaging the viewer in this way.
I have also been looking at work of Robert Rauschenberg investigating his extreme experimentation of mediums and his way of repurposing objects and inserting them into the canvas.
I have spoken more about his work here:
Themes & Visual Influences