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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Concept or Technique?

Hidden Symmetry   oil/canvas   48 x 24 x 1.5
Making art can be approached in different ways.  A young painting major in university told me that he always starts by putting his ideas on paper, by crafting a concept that he wishes to explore.  I find that university programs are concept-oriented, getting students to think outside of the box, to intellectually explore new ways of thinking through art.  Excellent.  This way of thinking produces thought-provoking work.

Local and regional art organizations tend to revere technique, the drawing and redrawing, the painting and repainting in the hopes of getting it right, of improving draftspersonship and the ages-old methods of paint application.  Lighting is everything.  Painting what you see right down to the yellow drape behind the model.  Also excellent.  This way of working can produce art that is beautifully engaging, work that creates pause through its paint application and color use.

I cannot imagine beginning a work by making a life is already too filled with lists.  I am trying to escape lists!  My own method is strictly intuitive, creating movement and rhythm through stroke and color.  In many instances, when the subject simply does not challenge my intellect or my sensibilities, the work is discarded.

It is my own belief that the best of all scenarios is the work that marries technique along with concept.  Work from each school of thought is sought out and admired.  Judges seem to favor one or the other and it is our aim in Kaleidoscope to provide an opportunity for all work to shine.

No answers.  Just more questions.