a few new artists….

I found a great blog on WordPress called Rembrandt’s Dog’s List that I will definitely be looking through for a while. It has already given me some great painters to look at that I have not seen before.

Molly Zuckerman-Hartung (http://www.mollyzuckermanhartung.com/) is doing some fascinating things with mixed media, and has one of the most extensive sites for an artist that I have ever seen, including her 95 Theses on Painting.

Rayk Goetze (http://www.raykland.de/) is yet another fantastic German painter with a good mix of figurative and abstract painting.

Lastly, through one of my many internet-art-browing tangents, I found Pierre Alechinsky. He is an older painter, but his paintings include graphic black and white areas that remind me of comics.

Progress

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I have recently been trying out some new stuff with my work. I am continuing to develop my method of written text as a background, and I am pushing the boundaries of what I can do with that method. I am using a wide range of materials to paint on including found boards and glass.

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I am testing the different ways to use text to my advantage, In the example below, I am going to fill in the words to create a self portrait. As you can also see, at the bottom of the picture is a piece of glass I have been painting on. I am quite satisfied by the affects I get when I paint on glass and want to push the use of this material.

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I have also been doing small paintings taken from photos and still lives. Here is a painting based on a photo taken from Berlin’s Neue Museum. I am hoping to work on it more later.

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Cecily Brown

Thug in Landscape

Thug in Landscape – oil on linen 196 x 246 cm

Cecily Brown is currently showing at Contemporary Fine Arts in Berlin along with Juergen Teller. I attended the opening on September 18 and was subsequently mind-blown by the paintings. Cecily Brown is a female, British painter, who is making paintings similar to the work of the Abstract Expressionists of the 1940s and 50s. Channeling clear influences such as de Kooning and Francis Bacon, Brown creates work with one foot in the past and the other taking a step forward.

 The Triumph of Virtue oil on linen 196 x 246 cm

The Triumph of Virtue – oil on linen 196 x 246 cm

There are basically three different types of painting: still life, landscape, and figurative. Brown’s work is clearly figurative, as disembodied limbs and faces push and pull, simultaneously bursting from and hiding within the paintings. However, she also seems to blend in elements of still lifes and landscapes. Despite the packed and crowded painting, there is a surprising amount of space in the pieces. Imagine a landscape by JMW Turner, inhabited by the grotesque figures of Francis Bacon, yet fractured and destroyed like the Cubists. Brown also manages to involve the symbolic nature of still life painting through her use of shape and color.

The Bodysnatcher

The Bodysnatcher – oil on linen 170 x 165 cm

The title of the show, “The Sleep Around and the Lost and Found,” gives viewers some insight into the paintings. With its sexual undertones it relates to the figures in the paintings. You know they are there, but they are hidden by all sorts of writhing color and mutating form. As a female working with a style and medium that is associated with white, American males, may assumptions can be made about what she wants these paintings to say. However, the artist herself would probably say something completely different.

The show runs until September 26. More information here

Inspiration

Painting by David Reed

Painting by David Reed

Berlin has proved useful so far in giving me different ideas for new directions in my work. I have made some trips to various galleries and museums around the city. The first was the Hamburger-Banhoff Museum, which proved to be quiet enlightening. Though the museum was not as diverse as most, it offered some fine temporary exhibits along with a dense, but select, collection. Among the temporary exhibitions was the show Two by Two, which displayed the work of David Reed and Mary Heilmann together. I was familiar was Heilmann’s work and excited to see it, and knew nothing of David Reed. His paintings caught me off guard, too say the least. There application and composition raised questions and spurred my imagination. I will definitely be copying his work sometime soon.

Joseph Beuys' Tallow.

Joseph Beuys’ Tallow.

The collection also comprised of the work of Joseph Beuys and Robert Rauschenberg, two artists I have been delving into for a while.

Classic Rauschenberg

Classic Rauschenberg