Where does drawing and painting begin?
Line, embraces form and seduces the eye.
Line, divides the bulk of matter, into conceivable proportions.
A tree makes a line into the sky.
A bird, makes a line through the air.
A vein, traces a line across a hand.
Without line, shape has no boundaries.
With line, we can encompass the boundaries of our existence.
It is there, it exists.
Line, represents the thought, while shape provides the reality.
Line, offers the chance to record spontaneously, and allows for change and progression.
Line, may make shape in the same manner, that shadow against light will make shape.
It is by surrounding a light area with a darker area or line, that shape comes into being.
A line, may be active or passive, depending on its direction and character.
Line, can become the positive force on a negative surface.
It can divide the surface of the plane, to introduce a third plane or dimension. So that two positive forces may act on a negative surface, and so that a positive force, may act on a passive surface.
Confusion is brought abut by the inability to distinguish a positive force from a negative force. The two fuse together. This especially, when a negative force has the potential, to become a positive shape or form.
To explore a subject it is first necessary to perceive the invisible. Or what (seems) invisible.
In order to do this, we must push away the visible and travel into the next space, creating a link between you and the inner sense of a subject.
If we look at painting or sculpture, we can see that there is not only form but space. The one being reliant on the other. We tend to look at things in terms of solidness, while disregarding the space form when surrounded by solid mass.
This may be understood more clearly, if we consider the ancient art of calligraphy, where the white of the paper is made as valid as the dark, by use of line and /or form.
All the elements and principles of design must be used to create a balanced, harmonious and unified work.
A two dimensional surface may require many dimensions – not just three – because colour, line and the gradation or (scale) of these components can take us beyond the third dimension – break through that barrier into infinity and back. From there to here and back.
It’s a going and a return from a centre. Our centre and its centre and again back to our centre.
It can be a meditation, both for the artist and the viewer.
The artist’s experience, is the spontaneous expression of NOW, which takes us into an experience not entirely theirs, but ours. It is no longer the artist’s. It never truly was, for the artist is a channel, tuned in, to make a spontaneous expression of what comes.
Becomes the dot, journeys through the dot – expands the field and makes a circular navigation through the experience and returns.
The end product is the tangible report.
The world of art has a constant agreement with the unreached – to take us by surprise. If the artist is not in tune, then what emerges, is either a still birth or a distortion. The faithful midwife will not hasten, or over interfere.
There seems to be a need for a constant revaluation of what we are saying.
Where a society has lost its faith, art needs to rise to a substantial level of authenticity.
If we were to imagine that there is no real present, but liken time to a pendulum, swinging from past to future, through the present, but ever moving , then we can see art as a continuous movement (through time) as we perceive it.
We can see how the world of art continues ever moving, passing back and forth through today, like lenses focusing. When the lenses focus we are aware of existence – that we ARE. Then we pass back through time again to past and future.
If the pendulum stops, we are no longer moving, but frozen in space and exposed to disintegration.
If we ponder on the fact of man’s measure of time, we can see it as a journey.
If we ponder on another premise – that everything that has, and will exist, is NOW, then past, present and future merge, moving though space which has no time.
But what has this to do with art and its connection with the human? Simply that the artist is trying to evolve a language which will (essentially) replace an inadequate language – that of communication.
It’s all a matter of how a person responds to everything. How much understanding and clarity of vision we have at the time. How much we care about the details which matter or which don’t appear to matter, but in a strange way, complete the picture.
It’s like people who appear superficial, that they are masking off their real selves. Scratch away a little for the truth and its there. The masks are all part of the setting. Something for us to explore.
A work of art has its own aura. We are drawn to, or repelled, according to its shades.
If the spirit is not calm it cannot think or act in a rational manner. It locks into chaos and disorder.
The facility for penetrating into the mysteries of life has been called by Colin Wilson ’Faculty X’ which he says:: “Is latent in all of us. Art has the power of inducing a degree of faculty X says Colin Wilson. This is why human beings invented it. An awareness of an extra or another level of sense pattern where it seems possible to draw on senses which would normally seem impossible.” *I have paraphrased here as I can’t find his exact words.
Either immense efforts are involved, or because of some strange emotional phenomena it can come to a person out of the blue, seemingly without massive fore effort.
The job of the artist is to unmask the reality – to make things visually clear in order to be comprehended by the mind and the senses. Of breaking down the barriers of what appear to us as hidden and what the truth is.
But truth can’t be explained. It’s there when we recognise it. It’s there at different times for everyone. Truth is elusive. It’s the job of the human to break down the superficial barriers in order to build on a surface of what we see as truth. It can happen when we walk up to something and have that moment of recognition (Eureka) I know – I found it! But we only perceive it as truth because it is something to which we respond and recognise, although perhaps different for everyone.
We become interpreters – perceiving and expressing.
We don’t always take the time to look, to see. Life gets very speedy. We get caught up in the rush and hurly burly. We say: I’ll look at it late but not now.
With the speed of things today it may not be there tomorrow.
Some time in the future we may be painting pictures of real concrete. Concrete landscape. If it comes to that it will be the artist’s job to translate the truth of that reality.
It’s not just a fact of finding what is beautiful, but what is real. Beauty is only a word, like truth – it’s just as elusive.
Oscar Wilde said: “Truth is never pure and rarely simple>”
Consider two points. Two opposite poles.
The distance between the two points at either end of the scale.
Two opposing forces creating a pressure upon the space between.
Four edges. Surrounding a space –
An empty space.
A surface and a texture,
Then a mark and another.
From there, another mark.
Several black marks on white paper.
The beginnings of an idea.
An extension of a thought.
A walk around the canvas.
Space and form, meeting line and line parallel.
Opposing, curving, meandering.
A hiatus, between thought and thought.
A line, moving into the invisible world of what is still (yet) unplotted.
A line, clasping the edge – one of the four edges of the canvas.
Cobwebs of idea and thought, disappearing into the space beyond the edge of the canvas, continuing the thought
We makes maps of the territory we explore, not knowing whether we will travel the same roads again. We capture the rainbow, mix and blend, add and take away, wash back, glaze.
Soft veils of colour, one over the other.
Shape and colour, appear and disappear.
Washing through glaze and glaze until at last we know this is the complete one. Captured and complete for maybe only a little while. It may stay, it may change.