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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Paradigm Shift

In 1962 scientist Thomas Kuhn developed his notion of a paradigm shift, which determined that progress, or knowledge, is not linear, not evolutionary, but, rather a series of peaceful interludes punctuated by intellectually violent revolutions.  I don't think that this notion is strictly science-based.  Over the years, I have been obsessed, sometimes for years, about various art-related elements, all related to the way I see art-making and what I have decided to be visually stimulating and aesthetically pleasing TO ME.  We all know, that seeing is subjective.  And aesthetic differences vary from artist to artist.  That's what makes it all so fun.  My quest in all of this problem solving is to reduce an image to its essence, to say only what needs to be said.  The overall feel of the work is more important than the pieces parts.  My first obsession was the notion of transparency/opacity.  That lasted many years.  Then I moved on to complex color.....layering of colors to achieve a good feel.  I found that I much preferred color that was layered and truly considered, rather than the spontaneous local color expressed in most all prima works.  (I do, however, feel that alla prima painting offers so much in learning to make quick decisions and fresh stroke-making).  Hard and soft edges became another obsession, where my desire was to merge the subject and its ground in a kind of oneness.  Recently, I have experienced yet another shift in the way I wish to see my art....I simply cannot resist it.  The process tends to deconstruct the subject a bit, allowing for an even deeper merging into the ground, as well as further redefining that which is important.  The process is difficult, enduring and, frankly, requires a whole lot of paint.  But, for some reason, I believe that this is where I am supposed to be at present.....and I am enjoying the ride....when I am not tearing my hair out. It is stimulating.

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