Abstract Artists In Their Own Words [BBC]

Advertisements

Followers milestone, my absence on WordPress, my practice.

Well this blog originally began as a course requirement for University, however it morphed into something else. It became another place for me to share my thoughts on art and my own art practice at length. Although I have not yet posted anything of academic substance I feel that I have been able to make my voice be heard, however soft it may be at this time.

 

I recently achieved the 20 followers milestone on my blog, kinda feels like unlocking an achievement in a video game to be quite honest. 20 followers is definitely a solid milestone, considering that at the beginning I did not intend to use this blog anymore than I felt that I needed to, and here we are, just over a year later and I am still posting content as regularly as I can. I know that I have been quite absent, I have given up on the artist of the week feature, it felt as though it was a bit of a waste, I was merely copying and pasting biographical text from the source site (with proper references and acknowledgements) as well as images. It didn’t feel as though I was contributing anything besides a digital regurgitation of an artists brief bio and some examples of their work. I want to create pieces of writing in my own words about the artists that interest me rather than just cutting and pasting some info on them. I am aiming on creating more critical pieces of writing, however, as many writers; art writers in particular, will know it isn’t an easy job to just pop out any old bit of critical writing. Much like my paintings and other work it takes time to construct, edit and refine. So bare with me.

 

I am also wanting to produce reviews on shows that I have seen, although history will prove that art critics aren’t always the most popular people when they write negatively about an artist or their work. Well whatever I may write will be my opinion, it doesn’t need to be taken as “God’s word”, and I encourage feedback and correspondence from my subscribers (constructive and thought through).

 

As for my practice, I have had a rather fruitful year. Producing somewhere in the range of 50-60 works in total (should really do a count). I have been involved in a solid number of group shows and I finally had my own solo show as well as being involved in a group show in a Sydney gallery. I accomplished more than I thought I would in a year. I have grown my Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram and I am actively trying to further my blog/website; raising the bar on how well my social media outlets perform and how well they’re going at helping me get my work out their and grow the audience for it. As I will be seeking paid employment in the new year, I imagine my production of paintings and works on paper may slow down somewhat. Though it may slow down, this does not mean that it will cease completely, now way!!! I am aiming to be involved in more group shows this coming year; 2014. And I also am aiming to have another solo show; I will be trying to make it a regular event every year; of course some years I may not be able to produce a substantial amount of work, but group shows will always be a staple in my exhibiting schedule.

 

Many thanks to everyone who has supported me for the last seven years. Who would have thought that I would have become what I am today; even if that isn’t much. I am doing what I love, people are responding to it positively and constructively for the most part. For those who only know how to respond negatively, I am reminded of some people’s inadequacies and I keep my head up and my feet moving past your ignorance.

 

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 

Regards,

 

Nik.

 

 

 

Artist of the week: David Hockney

David Hockney (British, b.1937) is a painter, photographer, and set designer, first associated with the Pop Art movement, and later renowned for his intimate portraits and naturalistic scenes of both the everyday and the artificial of California life. Hockney was born in Bradford, England, and studied at the Bradford School of Art, exhibiting an extraordinary aptitude for draftsmanship. He later attended the London Royal College of Art, where he met fellow student R.B. Kitaj (1932–2007), who strongly influenced him and inspired Hockney to infuse the personally expressive into his works.

Hockney’s first works included common and commercial images, such as boxes of tea, which caused his early inclusion with the Pop Art movement. Hockney also favored a mix of literature and scandalous subject matter in his early work, including pieces on homosexuality inspired by Walt Whitman poems created in the Art Brut style of Jean Dubuffet. His mature work often draws on photographs, particularly after visiting California regularly in the 1960s, where he created naturalistic paintings with a flat, serene appearance, including his famous Swimming Pools series. He works in many mediums, including set design and photography. Hockney has held major retrospectives at the Royal College of Art in London, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. He currently lives and works in California.

 

Image

Celia Observing (not in Scottish Arts Coucil or Tokyo), 1976, etching (ed. of 60), 90.2 x 74.9 cm.

 

Image

 

Table Flowable, 1991, colour lithograph (ed.44/500), 111.8 x 144.8 cm.

 

Text and images: http://www.artnet.com/artists/david-hockney/

Strokes of Genius: De Kooning On De Kooning

Volume 3 in the six-part Strokes of Genius series featured on PBS in 1984. Introduction by Dustin Hoffman from the studio of Willem de Kooning.

I claim no copyright or permission. I am just sharing an educational clip I found on YouTube.

Artist of the week: Richard Diebenkorn.

Richard Diebenkorn (American, 1922–1993) was a versatile 20th century American painter. Born in Portland, Oregon, Diebenkorn grew up in San Francisco, where he attended Stanford University. Diebenkorn lived in several other locations around the United States before he returned to California, where he continued to produce his mature paintings. After two years of service in the United States Marine Corps, Diebenkorn studied at the University of New Mexico under the G.I. Bill and was immersed in the Abstract Expressionism, inspired by New York School Artists. Diebenkorn’s focus shifted, however, in the 1950s, when he began to produce Figurative paintings associated with the Bay Area Figurative Movement. Inspired by the work of Henri Matisse (French, 1869–1954), Diebenkorn drew on his bright Californian surroundings to create images defined by planes of carefully chosen color. After a decade and a half of painting figuratively, in 1967 Diebenkorn returned to abstraction, with a new geometric style different from his early Abstract Expressionist-inspired efforts. This is evident in his famous Ocean Park cycle, which he developed into 140 paintings from 1967, until his death in 1993.

Image

Blue Loop, 1980, Aquatint printed in colors, 37.8 x30.2 cm.

Image

Green, 1986, Etching, aquatint and drypoint in colors, 134.6 x 103.4 cm.

Images and text: http://www.artnet.com/artists/richard-diebenkorn/

RAW Wollongong 3 Days to go!

Image

 

Tickets available here: http://goo.gl/RhS9IG

Artist of the week: Joan Miró

After spending a few of his teenage years in a technical school, Joan Miró (Spanish, April 20, 1893–December 25, 1983) began in earnest his artistic career. He trained at Francesc Galí’s Escola d’Art in Barcelona from 1912 to 1915, after which he had his first solo show in Barcelona at the gallery of José Dalmau in 1918. Starting in 1920, Miró divided his time between Montroig, Spain, and Paris, where he commingled with poets such as Max Jacob, and took part in Dada activities. Dalmau organized a solo show for Miró in Paris at the Galerie la Licorne in 1921, and in 1924, Miró joined the Surrealist group. The consistently Abstract nature of his works, such as The Birth of the World (1925) lended well to the dream-like ambiance of Surrealism.

After a trip to the Netherlands in 1928, Miró created the series Dutch Interiors, in which amorphous forms entered into his work. On October 12th, 1929, he married Pilar Juncosa in Palma de Mallorca, and then moved to Paris. During this period, he rebelled against painting, and produced wood reliefs, assemblages, and collages. Although he was living in France, the influence of the Spanish Civil War can be observed in the intense color and strong imagery of Still-life with an Old Shoe (1937). Experimentation continued in Miró”s work until his death in 1983. His wide body of work included ceramics, various prints, drawing, and sculpture. Major projects include the 1958 ceramic murals The Sun and The Moon for the UNESCO building in Paris. He collaborated with Josep Llorens Artigas (Spanish, 1892–1980), and was awarded the Guggenheim Foundation’s Grand Prize. This collaboration can been seen in the artwork called Miró Artigas. Numerous retrospectives of his works have taken place during his lifetime and after.

 

Image

Personnage, oiseaux, 1976, oil and pencil on wood, 37.1 x 31.5 cm.

 

Image

Libre Del Sis Sentits II, 1981, Aquatint, (ed. 40/50), 72.4 x 54.6 cm.

 

Images and text: http://www.artnet.com/artists/joan-mir%C3%B3/

Artist of the week: Fernando Botero

Fernando Botero (Columbian, b.1932) is celebrated for his painted and sculpted scenes featuring animals and figures with inflated proportions, reflecting the artist’s predilection for satire, caricature, and political commentary in his work. Born in Medellin, Botero began exhibiting his paintings there in 1948, and later worked as a set designer in Bogotá. In the 1950s he traveled to several different European countries, including Spain, Italy, and France, to study the work of Renaissance and Baroque masters. He also traveled to Mexico to familiarize himself with the current Mexican avant-garde. Botero became renowned for the varied source material he drew upon, from Columbian folk imagery to canonical works by Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez (Spanish, 1599–1660), Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881–1973), and Francisco de Goya (Spanish, 1746–1828).

In his depictions of contemporary Latin American life, he portrays the poverty and violence prevalent in Columbia in somber images, as well as in his iconic portraits of inflated figures, typically satiric portrayals of Latin American presidents, first ladies, and government officials. A meeting with Dorothy Miller from the Museum of Modern Art in the early 1960s proved to be a turning point in his career; she acquired his work at a time when abstraction was the celebrated idiom, and he later exhibited his work in a major exhibition at the museum, solidifying his international reputation. In the 1970s Botero moved to Paris, where he created large figural sculptures with his signature inflated forms. He remains engaged with images of his Latin American home city, and with overtly political imagery; his recent works include large paintings of prisoners at Abu Ghraib in a direct commentary on the war in Iraq. Botero has exhibited his work at the Museum of Modern Art in Copenhagen, the Maillol Museum in Paris, the Palazzo Benezia in Rome, the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, and the National Museum in Bogotá. He currently lives and works in Paris, Montecarlo, and New York.

 

artwork_images_1047_810604_fernando-botero

Reclining Woman, 1985, Bronze, h: 83.8 x w: 137.2 x d: 80.6 cm.

artwork_images_424121842_810467_fernando-botero

Woman Seated On A Cube, 2006, Bronze, h: 27 x w: 32 x d: 43 cm.

Images and text: http://www.artnet.com/artists/fernando-botero/

Jeffrey Smart Dies at 91.

An icon of Australian art has passed away, known for his Surrealist imagery, Jeffrey Smart spent a majority of his adult life living and working in Italy. Always referred to as an expatriate, however, I will always see him as an Australian artist. When I was younger I used to marvel at his elaborate compositions, technical drawing and painting, his attention to detail and his intriguing  use of symbols. He is one of the last of the modern generation. I could go on to talk about his career as an artist, but what I would say can be found should you Google his name. So I will just leave you with some examples of his work, for I feel that they speaker louder than any words of mine ever could.

 

Image

 

 

Image

 

 

Image

 

 

Image

Artist of the week: Jasper Johns

Painter Jasper Johns (American, b.1930) was born in Georgia and attended the University of South Carolina before moving to New York City in his 20s. In New York, he met artist Robert Rauschenberg (American, 1925–2008), choreographer Merce Cunningham, and composer John Cage, all of whom profoundly influenced each other. In 1958, Johns entered the public eye when dealer Leo Castelli visited Rauschenberg’s adjacent studio; Johns was awarded a show at Castelli’s gallery, which then lead to his first sale at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Famous for his paintings of flags, targets, maps, and numbers, Johns painted seemingly mundane but powerful symbols in a variety of media, such as oil, encaustic, ink, pencil, collage, and relief. Though Johns is sometimes labeled Neo-Dada or the father of Pop Art, his work displays a deep concern with questions of representation and the nature of mark-making within art.

 

artwork_images_928_797592_jasper-johns

Untitled, 1978. Lithograph on J. Green paper, 69.8 x 101.6 cm.

jasper-johns-cups-4-picasso-prints-and-multiples-lithograph-zoom

Cups 4 Picasso, 1972. Lithograph, in colors on Hanga paper, 22 х 32 inches.

Images and text: http://www.artnet.com/artists/jasper-johns/