Posts Tagged ‘Abstract art’

Some October favourites:

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

"Ascent" by Ann Cloete is a large, exuberant work of abstract expressionism.  The painting has a strong palette of yellows, ochres and red/brown shades and uses strong brushwork and contrasting tonal lines which give a great sense of life and movement round the canvas.

When viewed close up one sees first a "pathway" of light in yellows and white like strong sunlight, bordered on each side by textured areas which appear rather like steps.   However, upon stepping back to view the painting at a distance a strong portrait emerges on the right hand side.   What appeared to be randomly abstract lines and textures resolve into the profile of a bearded man with rounded brow and a strong bone structure.   He appears to have tribal markings on his face and this, coupled with his upright bearing and seemingly tranquil gaze are somewhat  suggestive of a tribal warrior.   At another glance he could almost be a lion.

The artist has used greens within the skin tones to suggest a strong light reflecting off the forehead, alone with deep shadowing on the face, and so the impression is that the man is gazing towards the sun (whether actual or metaphorical).  The combination of suggested images and impressions gave me the sense that the painting was, for me at least, about the spiritual ascent of humanity.   It is undoubtedly a compelling and fascinating  work.

Some October favourites:

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

"Abstract SW002″  by Debra Stevenson is a radiant piece of abstract art made with ink and acrylic.   According to Debra it is based upon the idea of a spider’s web.   This work uses skillful application of inks and acrylic paints to render a beautiful rainbow expression of a spider’s web.   The web like structures are predomninantly rendered in purples,  radiating out to deep oranges, leafy greens and indigo and aqua shades.   The colours are richly saturated, with all seven of the rainbow spectrum in the work, each colour merging and emerging from its neighbours to form subtle blends. 

The way the colours merge is rather reminiscent of water and looking at the painting I can imagine that the central purple web is a bridge over a lake with woods on each side and a vibrant sunset reflecting behind the web/bridge – it appeals to me as a fantasy of how the world looks to a spider.    The web forms are carefully rendered and appear three dimensional, coming forward out of the painting towards the viewer.   There are shades of greens most of the way round the edges of the piece, which draws the eye round, with the strength of the red/orange/purple centre capturing the gaze repeatedly. 

This is a stunning piece, large and full of life and will capture attention wherever it is hung.    However, it would look  wonderful as a focal point in a room in which one of  the dominant shades of the painting also appeared in accent colours and deserves to be hung where the light will capture the colour gradations and celebrate the drama of this work.