Messy Surfaces

-By Donato

Joan of Arc-On the Field   detail   2012  Donato
One of the major changes I have gone through in how I paint is in the willingness to make mistakes in my paintings and then find a way to correct them.  It becomes a game of chase, seeking out the right value, color and edges from the 'incorrect' mass in the painting, forming it back into submission as I seek the perfection of form and atmospheric effects I see in my minds eye.  Thus rather than attempting to create a perfect stroke in the direct application of the paint, I now prefer the game of chance as I seek resolution out of additional marks into a mess of pre-existing color and paint. This is closer to an act of playing and discovery and less one of knowing.

This change has not been a conscious shift, but rather an evolution in the relationship to my art.  Before, I was a creator, delivering realizations of the unknown to my audience to dazzle them with special effects of surfaces or renderings of the surreal.  But now I am spending more time thinking about what these images mean to me.  Why am I am painting?  What am I painting? These issues have reassessed how I relate to a painting as a physical object, and increased my fascination in the surface quality of the paint.

I find a complex surface an intriguing part of the visual art experience, increasing the time I spend engaged with a work of art.  Is that a red-brown I see in the blue sky?  A flash of brilliant yellow on a cheek?  My assumptions about what color is and how I need to control it are challenged as I find more visceral interactions grounding my artistic experiences.  My works are getting messier as objects within the visual field merge together, becoming less iconic and individually defined from their surrounding elements.

I cannot say why this change is occurring, but only that it is opening new doors on how I am interpreting my subjects.  I am driven less by the need to describe my forms, and more the need to present how they feel.  It is a wonderful way to begin another phase of my career with the human figure.

I hope you enjoy the journey with me.

Joan of Arc-On the Field   detail   2012  Donato

Vincent Desiderio    Boating Party    2010

Bastien Lepage    The Wood Gatherer   detail

Jusepe de Ribera   detail

Labels: