Underway Wednesday: Embracing Simplicity

Last week I posted about some new artwork that I have been creating in the background for the last 8 months, “Vanishing Silhouettes”. Sometimes it is hard for me to know when to stop a painting or other piece of art. I tend to get so microscopic and “in the zone” that I forget what is around me and start focusing and focusing. The great artistic genius Leonardo Da Vinci once said, “A painting is never finished only abandoned”. What he meant was that there are nuances in the early stages of a piece that are effective in the overall artistic aesthetic. But mainly h meant that an artist can work a piece to death, continuing endless details and changing colors, etc. for absolute perfection. An artist can always go back and touch up a painting. They can always find an imperfection (even in photorealism). Centuries later, a group of artists would take this idea to the extreme, leaving canvases blank, or with single colors and simplified shape. The idea that less is more.

Through my career I have always tight-roped the line between too much and not enough – pulling out minute details in areas and leaving some areas in their raw (some would say “unfinished”) state. I rather enjoy this push and pull between the two. With this new series, I decided to pick a side and I have embraced the minimalist way of thinking – pulling back before I have done too much. Letting the outlined shape hold the chaos of the spray paint and mark-making safely within itself. The stark flat black background surrounding the shape representing the unknown future and allowing the shape to jump off the substrate with ease. There is something genuine and innocent to these pieces. I had an epiphany over the weekend while discussing these ideas with some colleagues. I came to the conclusion that these silhouette pieces lend, nay, they beg themselves to three-dimensional form. So, I as prepare for the next stages of this series, I’d like to show off a preview of a piece in progress utilizing three-dimensions. This cut out bear will be floating on a black substrate to be hung indoors. However, upon propping this little guy up for this photo, I hope you will see what I am planning for the future. Think Metal. Think Yard. Think Art. Oh yes, it’s going to happen. Stay tuned…

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