View Full Version : 15th century abstracts
04-20-2014, 01:00 PM
I've started exploring what 15th century abstraction would be like, using a period colour palette. This is acrylic on 2 cm thick plywood, gessoed but wood left rough, and 30 cm x 40 cm. Obvious reference to Malevich.
04-20-2014, 01:07 PM
This painting takes its inspiration from the backgrounds of period painting (which are quite interesting actually), and is gestural. Acylic on canvas (50 cm x 100 cm). Title is "all that is melts into nothingness", interpretation of the condition of modernity (see Marshall Berman's "All that is solid melts into air: the experience of modernity").
04-20-2014, 01:17 PM
This is a really interesting idea to explore. The painting looks really good too, I like the crispness of the square and the color changes on the bottom, it all works together wonderfully.
04-20-2014, 06:31 PM
Sounds like an interesting concept. Besides the palette of the wouldn't you also want to use a medium of the 1400's also? Will be interested to see what you come up with.
04-21-2014, 01:20 PM
Re supports: one is on wood (plywood), the other canvas. I've done some on paper, too. Will no doubt do unstretched canvas.
The problematique for me is why did abstraction as we know it emerge when it did. When one looks at cave paintings, one must wonder about the mind in the cave (there is a book on this) and the same when looking at any painting, but particularly I think the period from about 1250 to 1550. In the same way I sat in the Tate Modern today looking at Rothko's Seagram paintings and wondered, for the umpteenth time, what he was thinking, I look at art from this period and ask the same question. Was it an evolution of the mind itself, or the emergence of the visual vocabulary to talk about it (obtusely you read some modern catalogues....). As much as cubism is Picasso et al visualising relativity theory, what were they thinking, too? We know today that the human mind/brain is an abstraction engine/incubator, delighting in pattern forming and recognition, not a camera recording reality with fidelity. When minds play, they 'do' abstraction.
Take a look at Jean Fouquet's Virgin and Child 1450. Note the almost plastic cerubim in the background, the odd anatomy. One of my favourites. Another is Christus Petrus' Portrait of a Young Girl, 1470 which I 'abstracted' (and sold too). An alabaster gem.
04-21-2014, 02:11 PM
I like both, the palette in the first one is particularly well done.:)
We know today that the human mind/brain is an abstraction engine/incubator, delighting in pattern forming and recognition, not a camera recording reality with fidelity. When minds play, they 'do' abstraction.
This is very interesting. I think the process of recognition is what I enjoy most about looking at art. For me, recognition can be of a subject in the physical world, but also can be of an emotion or a story, etc. And, I have been thinking lately that all painting is abstract, although some appears more or less representational.
I think your exploration in your work is a great idea. It might be interesting, too, to do a series on the same composition with each version using a different type of palette.
05-17-2014, 05:06 AM
A couple more, 30cmx40cmx2cm on mdf/plywood. I lightly sanded the panels then white primer (latex masonry) and kept the surface rough.
I appreciate the supportive comments. Thanks.
05-17-2014, 10:11 PM
I really like the first one in your last post (the third one shared). The colors really draw me in. Beautiful. It looks like something I would want to live with and look at frequently, allowing myself to see more each time.
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