Greetings, I just Concluded my first faculty critic for the spring semester which made me feel a little better about the ideas I'm working with in my studio. And this is the beginning of the second half in my program. The summary of my critique was about me narrowing down my train of thoughts in regards to how my paintings are perceived. With this, I would like to call your attention to my monkey brain talk in a previous blog entry, it seems almost inevitable for a new idea to show up and be ignored in my studio practice. If you constantly read my blog, you will find these ideas in my writing which includes sublime, space, meditation, and vector which is the most recent.
What I refer to as the sublime is an act that is pervasive in our contemporary society today analogous to the real function of the sublime. For instance, the fundamental reason why J.W. Turner painted in the 18th century in relation to the contemporary sublime. Meditation, on the other hand, is one which I'm still trying to figure out its purpose in my projects. In my opinion, it's that moment when one gets absorbed in a work of art and in return receives a few minute of relief from the contemporary sublime.
Additionally, space reinforces how the idea of the sublime and meditation come to play on a pictorial plane. It's the non-physical versus the physical space which is inherent in my painting. For example, that which is created by me makes it non-physical because it came to being through my creative process, while the physical is the objectness of my painting in a gallery space setting and how it is viewed by you.
The idea of the vector is relative to how non-physical space is constructed in my paintings. In a pre-situationist archive by Guy Debord "Theory of the Derive", his essay talked about "the 'Derive' as a rapid passage through various ambiances... it involves a playful-constructive behavior and awareness of psychogeographical effects." How does this idea relate to my practice? Possibly investigating my own derive will be a good way to own more formalistic qualities in my practice. More will be discussed in subsequent posts.
Here are some of my recent projects.
In relation to the content of the sublime as a contemporary issue, one of my early influence uses this content in her projects. The artist's name is Julie Mehretu, an Ethiopian-born and New York-based artist. Julian Bell in his essay, "contemporary art and the sublime" discussed Mehretu's artwork titled Dispersion 2002. Here the author states that "capitalism is a master-abstraction of massed human processes...Think of the alarm a free-falling diagonal on an economics graph can induce...Her melodramas of swooping vectors and nested graphemes, with their bravura, baroque complexities, seem to picture a dynamics of a very large and general scale... Mehretu's work seems to ask for the description 'tremendous'- an epithet that closely tracks the 'sublime'..." It says it all here how I read Mehretu's work as sublime amongst all other ideas the artist presents.
Julie Mehretu, Dispersion, 2002.
Have a great week.
Julian Bell, 'Contemporary Art and the Sublime', in Nigel Llewellyn and Christine Riding (eds.), The Art of the Sublime, Tate research publication, January 2013, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/the-sublime/julian-bell-contemporary-art-and-the-sublime-r1108499, accessed 10 February 2017.
Guy Debord, 'Theory of the Derive', Translated by Ken Knabb, Situationist International Online, December 1958, https://www.cddc.vt.edu/sionline/si/theory.html, accessed 22 February 2017.
Greetings everyone, in my last post I discussed J.M.W. Turner especially his sublime landscape paintings. In today's society, the content of the sublime is no longer the same but visually artworks are grounded in its existing aesthetics. The sublime can be described as a quality of greatness, whether physical, metaphysical, theological, or artistic. What does the sublime have to with greatness? Possibly, the greatness of an event which results in a great or terrible experience. Universally, greatness can be overwhelming which in turn is visually represented by an exaggerated amount of light just like in Turner's approach to his paintings. Similarly, a more appropriate contemporary illustration would be James Turrell, Olafur Eliasson or myself.
During my stay in Nigeria, as a child, I did not do traveling as much but this changed as I became more aware of my surroundings, it was relatively overwhelming because I could go see the world by myself. While traveling I paid more attention to the landscape- this is basically what we see- especially the distant parts of it and this brought about my own sublime amidst a million other possible ways a landscape can be experienced. On the other hand, the contemporary society is structured in ways where one can see through devices and these becomes the sublime of today. Technology is gradually changing how the world is experiencing itself, to illustrate, people today are satisfied with the non-physical experience of a place rather than the physical experience.
In the light of this, my paintings are geared towards the problem of how we experience our surroundings in the contemporary society. I am making a non-physical representation of my own sublime in the quest to challenge memory and presenting this memory with the hope it becomes the viewers.
Have a great week
This previous week, I learned about Jered Sprechers work, "a plane is the Pocket in the Corner of the mind". He created this painting after his residency at Chinati foundation in Marfa, Texas. As human,
"Remembering is one of our valued abilities...without it, each moment in the present would be divorced from preceding moments, and perception would no longer lead to conception." ( themes of contemporary art, Jean Robertson and Craig McDaniel, pg.157 )
Jered's memory of his experience in Texas, the galls and the passion flower influenced this work greatly. The first image triggered in the mind by the painting was the abstract nature of the picture plane. It required a second look to notice the representation Jered used in his painting. Also in his notes, he referenced Barnett Newman, an abstract expressionist and one of the foremost of the color field painters, "Barnett Newman’s Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow, & Blue IV comes to mind as a painting where the body and eye scan and relate to the actual-sized canvas" (thefinch.net , 2016) This is inherent here, the notion of the body in relation to the eye scan versus the scale of Jered's painting.
Jered Sprechers, A Plane is a Pocket in the Corners of the Mind, oil on canvas, 2014
Hi there, I'm an MFA candidate at Georgia Southern University. I enjoy creating and when I'm not, cycling is the therapy. Have a good time reading.