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Sketchbook Autumn 2020 Flipbook PDF

Sketchbook Autumn 2020




Isabella Depla’s Sketchbook 2020 18053244

Shintaro Ohata

Anselm Kiefer

Ohata creates mixed media artwork that blurs the line between painting and sculpture combining his 3D polystyrene faceted sculptures with 2D oil paintings.

“Kiefer reflects upon Germany’s postwar identity and history, grappling with the national mythology of the Third Reich.” “His works are characterised by an unflinching willingness to confront his culture’s dark past, and unrealised potential, in works that are often done on a large, confrontational scale well suited to the subjects. “

I find Ohata’s work mesmerising. The movement, the colours and the emotions that he conveys in every piece is so dynamic that it subconsciously creates an entire narrative around each work. They are absorbing and immersive, hard to drag yourself away from. “...I believe that the viewers could feel the atmosphere of my works more lively and dynamically. I had been seeking for a way to give more realistic feel on my piece without changing my painting style, and then I got inspired by the painting in the backgrounds of film and theatre. This was when I came up with the idea of making sculptures popping out of paintings.” - Shintaro Ohata

“His works incorporate materials such as straw, ash, clay, lead, and shellac.” “What motivated you to include figurative objects such as submarines, sunflowers, tulips, etc, in your work? Why did you begin to combine painting and sculpture? shintaro-ohata/ node/75555 inspiration/artist-shintaro-ohatablends-sculptures-and-paintingsto-create-3d-artworks/

It is a question of reality. When I introduce an object, I do not create any additional illusion. What I make is what it is. Sometimes I want to be direct. Objects have their own spirituality“ I love his incorporation of 3D objects into his paintings. They bring a sense of reality, of transgressing what was once just a window into an image into actuality. This, along with his dark historic themes has a sobering quality to it. anselm-kiefer/

Yves Klein - Yves Klein: How texture affects our perception of colour in Blue Monochrome

Klein saw monochrome painting as an “open window to freedom, as the possibility of being immersed in the immeasurable existence of colour.”

Alice Watt “Inspired by the drama of nature, Alice’s paintings are a form of visual storytelling. Using sweeping brush strokes and luminous colours, Alice conveys her emotional response to the natural world through the use of paint.” “Her work is characterised by her spontaneous and instinctive mark making and focuses mainly on landscapes from her roots in New Zealand.” Watt: “I’d like to think that when people look at my work their imagination takes them off into their own authentic world.” I love Watt’s work. Although very different from my personal style, her use of colour, movement, emotion, and immersion are absorbing and excellent. They make me want to peel back the layers of paint in order to work out exactly how she created them – something I want to inspire among my viewers.

“He influenced minimal, conceptual and performance art, taking painting out of the frame, which he felt had imprisoned it for too long.” “Klein also blurred the boundaries between painting and sculpture by impregnating a range of objects, from sponges to plaster casts, with his signature blue.” “ is not really painting... Klein used rigid panels to which he attached sponges and other things...” “...wishing to challenge expectations of what an image can and should represent” “He was supervised by fire-fighters when he “painted” his works with a flame-thrower, finding yet another immaterial source to serve as his new paint brush.” I find Klein fascinating. He was light years ahead of his time, and had a huge impact on how we view conceptual art. Batchelor, D. (2000) Chromophobia. 10th ed. London: Reaktion (Focus on contemporary issues) pp.97-102

Yigal Ozeri

Caroline Walls “… interested in the construction and complexity of the female identity and the distinction between the private and the public self which are key themes…” Walls “subtracts detail and simplifies form to create a highly abstracted yet hopefully gestural composition that, although streamlined, still hopes to achieve a sense of expression and vitality.” I love her ambiguous use of composition - it draws the viewer in as they try to work out what it is they are viewing, reconstructing what Walls has reduced to its simplest form: understated abstracted bodily shapes and This lines. a

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Helen Beard

“...Celebrates Female Erotic Fantasy And Psychology” “Figurative compositions, sexually derived patterns drawn from pornographic sources and solid areas of dynamic colours are set against abstract and complex arrangements.” Her influences include: Louise Bourgeois, Annette Messager, Sophie Calle, Etel Adnan, Sonia Delaunay, Sarah Lucas, Cosey Fanni Tutti and Beatriz Milhazes.

“With tinges of Pre-Raphaelite aesthetics, Ozeri brings an ethereal and uninhibited sensibility to his paintings. His portraits denote art historical foundations in romanticism, while also offering contemporary notions of sensual femininity.” “Rooted in Carl Jung’s concept of anima, Ozeri’s depictions of a revitalized connectivity to nature prompt a confrontation of subconscious effeminate identity, and reinstate the beauty of innocent authentic experience.”


Ozeri creates large-scale photorealistic and cinematic portraits of women in a realm somewhere between reality and fantasy. I love the immense level of photorealism in his paintings - they are mesmerising - I wish I could paint like this!

Jess Fuller

“Fuller’s compositions are informed by an ecumenical visual library that includes high fashion, naive yard art, snapshots of nature or sidewalk detritus, and images of bodies entwined in arrangements erotic or comical.” “Freehand appliqué, splashy colours and loose, wobbly (occasionally phallic) shapes...” “... she sews biomorphic forms that may resemble tubes or body parts. They have the provisional quality of prototypes and in her latest experiments, she steps further into figuration: adding potentially wearable gloves, pants, and hats to her vocabulary.” “Evocative of Matisse’s cutouts, Arp’s assemblages and Miro’s tapestries, these works unite colour and texture to explore the limits of paint on canvas. Surfaces are washed, cut, glued, sewn, sprayed, and painted in a cyclical process that creates tension through the pairing of line and contour.”

Michelle Jader

William Kentridge

“Michelle Jader explores moments when we willingly and unwillingly dive into the next phase of our life...Transitions like these include the sense of falling, lack of control, and the feeling that anything is possible. We’re vulnerable in these moments...”

“Dealing with subjects as sobering as apartheid, colonialism, and totalitarianism, his work is often imbued with dreamy, lyrical undertones or comedic bits of self-deprecation that render his powerful messages both alluring and ambivalent.”

“Each oil portrait is composed of several piled panels... When stacked, these panels evoke depth and motion through distorted perspectives and blurred lines.’

“...unlike in traditional animation that employs multiple drawings to denote change and movement, Kentridge erases and alters a single, stable drawing while recording the changes with stop-motion camera work... the result is a hybrid of drawing and film that has been highly praised for both its innovative manipulation of media and its ability to look at troubling social issues in a way that is neither sentimental nor aggrandized. “ “He enters into historical discussions through the lives of three fictional characters: Soho Eckstein, Mrs. Eckstein, and Felix Teitelbaum. Their individual lives are set against the wide, political landscape of South Africa as well as the deeper forces of life like renewal and destruction... The personal and public become critically mixed, neither free of guilt nor completely capable of redemption.” I find Jader’’s depictions of people in motion to be completely hypnotising. The piled layers of translucent acrylic panels create a sort of fog/mist effect around the figures producing befogged dreamlike images that capture my imagination instantly. I used a Perspex screen in-front of an oil painting last Sem but never properly tried painting on it - these make me want to try it out.

Kentridge’s animations remind me of Michelle Jader’s paintings - the movement and energy produced by the use of multi-layered compositions is very effective and instantly instils an emotive narrative within me.

https://www.thebroad. org/art/william-kentridge

Emily Deutschman “I didn’t set out with an agenda. I enjoy the fact that the project lends itself to a lot of inquiry and discussion, but can also just be enjoyed on a purely humorous level. You don’t have to be educated or knowledgeable about the political system in order to like them. They’re boobs on a president’s face.” - Deutschman

Sarah Lucas “…Lucas’s bunny sculptures evoke female nudes reclining on chairs in states of abandon and vulnerability” -

I love Emily Deutschman. I love the sheer simplicity and humour of her paintings. They can be appreciated by everyone: of all ages, backgrounds, education levels etc. I love the cheeky almost child-like humour of her work, that, combined with her obvious technical skill, produces a fabulous series of watercolours.

“...Limply dangling arms and passively lolling legs provide a representation of abject femininity...” - Tate

“Lucas has elevated the works on a series of plinths... resetting the balance of power between sculpture and viewer.” “...the plinths raise the works to eye level or higher, amplifying the swagger and exuberance of Lucas’s cast of characters” -

“exotic and comedic” “unvarnished honesty with a moral undertone”

“Ms. Lucas’s works tend to be raw, sexually hilarious and heartily sceptical of propriety and societal repressiveness, especially concerning the body and its basic impulses.” - The New York Times “Lucas...challenges the ‘male gaze’ that views women merely as sexual objects.” - Tate

“Pauline Bunny” (1997) Wooden chair, tights, kapok, metal wire, stockings and metal clamp

“Sex Baby Bed Base” (2000) Vest, lemons and raw chicken carcass

Her influences include: Duchamp, Magritte, Louise Bourgeois, Gilbert & George, Martin Kippenberger and especially the sculptor Franz West as well as materials of Italian Arte Povera and Post-Minimalism. I find Sarach Lucas so intriguing. Her work has a sort of gritty dark-comedy to it using visual puns and bawdy humour whilst boldly addressing issues such as politics, gender and age stereotypes, class and language. She has a real eye for shape that can be seen throughout her work - especially prevalent in her bunny series.

Franz West

“West created playful sculptures incorporating objects from everyday life such as a hat, a broom, or even a whisky bottle.” “These roughly hewn, plaster-and-papier-mâché sculptural forms are intended to be handled by the viewer in a manner of his or her choosing, thereby ‘adapting’ the works to their own physical being and context.” “West instinctively rejected the idea of a passive relationship between artwork and viewer...These “ergonomically inclined” objects were actualized as artworks only when touched, held, worn, carried, or otherwise physically or cognitively engaged.” “...he explored sculpture increasingly through the framework of the ongoing dialogue between viewers and objects, while probing the internal aesthetic relations between sculpture and painting.”

“Chicken Knickers” (2000) C-print 273.2 x 196.3 cm 107½ x 77¼”

“West further expanded on his notion of legitimate sculpture in the 2000s, creating even larger and more colourful, painted works that openly challenged traditional notions of monumentality and beauty, and frequently elided figuration and abstraction.” West had a real feel for shape, for the eccentric and the lumpen. and never forgot sculpture’s relationship to the human body. I looked into West as he was named as one of Sarah Lucas’s main artistic influences. I love his use of colour (or that of his many collaborators) and the imperfect lumpy surface that envelop his many sculptures.

The Female Gaze

I studied this last semester but decided to do a bit more research to refresh myself.

“A term coined by feminists in response to the claims made by Mulvey that the conventions established in classical Hollywood films required all spectators, regardless of their sex, to identify with the male protagonist and to adopt the controlling male gaze around which such films were held to be structured. ‘The female gaze’ thus marked out neglected territory.” “What is the female gaze, then? It’s emotional and intimate. It sees people as people. It seeks to empathize rather than to objectify. (Or not.) It’s respectful, it’s technical, it hasn’t had a chance to develop, it tells the truth, it involves physical work, it’s feminine and unashamed, it’s part of an old-fashioned gender binary, it should be studied and developed, it should be destroyed, it will save us, it will hold us back..” “If anything, the female gaze is simply an awareness that women do not hold half the power, and that this imbalance is what leads to everything from fewer choices and double standards to pay gaps and glass ceilings, sexist language and sexual assault. White men remain vastly over-represented in art, as in life.” “Few jobs on a movie set have been as historically closed to women as that of cinematographer,” the Film Society writes. “The persistence of the term ‘cameraman’ says it all.” “Classical Hollywood cinema, we have learnt through Mulvey’s polemic essay, reflects a patriarchal language: woman is represented as ‘other’, as an object rather than a subject, materializing man’s unconscious.” “...there are several things to note; first, the sparseness of female-directed films at the beginning of the twentieth century and how that changed starting in the 1970s. You’ll also note how it’s not until the 1990s that I include a female director of colour, and how many of these filmmakers only made one feature film. There are also quite a few directors who eschew the modifier of “female” or who have rejected the notion of their films being called “feminist.11 And the quotes used from critics and authors mainly come from white men. All of this demonstrates how female filmmakers (and our experiences of film as a whole, including who has historically written about film) have been limited by the barriers of gender, race, and sexual orientation.” (Malone, 2018, p.9) “What we tried to do is portray them as human beings.” Yorgos Lanthimos’ aim for his latest film, The Favourite, which foregrounds an all-female love triangle... The male gaze is a fixed set of assumptions about the world, determined by age-old power dynamics. The female gaze is more various, more accommodating, more intersectional. It doesn’t exist in the singular.” Filmmaker April Mullen said, “To me, the female gaze is transparency – the veil between audience and filmmaker is thin, and that allows people in more.” My incorporation of 3D elements take this idea of the female gaze further, the veil between subject and viewer becomes thin in my own work. The subject reaches out, becomes material, and draws the viewer in to her experience. In my practice, I use my lens as a female artist painting female subjects to embody this gaze, to explore the breast and body ‘at play’. My paintings aim to show empowered female forms, taking ownership of their own sexuality. Sassatelli, R. (2011) ‘Interview with Laura Mulvey: Gender, Gaze and Technology in Film Culture’, Theory, Culture & Society, 28(5), pp. 123–143. doi: 10.1177/0263276411398278. Malone, A. (2018). The female gaze: Essential Movies Made by Women. Mango.

Laura Mulvey “Laura Mulvey (b. 1941) is best known for the groundbreaking essay ‘Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema’ (1973, published 1975) in which she coined the term ‘male gaze’ and tackled the asymmetry at the heart of cinema – the centrality of the male viewer and his pleasure.” “Much of her early critical work investigated questions of spectatorial identification and its relationship to the male gaze, and her writings, particularly the 1975 essay Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, helped establish feminist film theory as a legitimate field of study.” “Her theories are influenced by the likes of Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan (by using their ideologies as “political weapons”) whilst also including psychoanalysis and feminism in her works. Mulvey is predominantly known for her theory regarding sexual objectification on women in the media, more commonly known as “The Male Gaze” theory.” “In the male gaze, woman is visually positioned as an “object” of heterosexual male desire. Her feelings, thoughts and her own sexual drives are less important than her being “framed” by male desire.” “The magic of the Hollywood style ...arose, not exclusively, but in one important aspect, from its skilled and satisfying manipulation of visual pleasure. Un­challenged, mainstream film coded the ‘erotic into the language of the domi­nant patriarchal order.” (Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, 1975 p. 59) “This article will discuss the interweaving of that erotic pleasure in film, its meaning, and in particular the central place of the image of woman. It is said that analysing pleasure, or beauty, destroys it. That is the intention of this article. The satisfaction and reinforcement of the ego that represent the high point of film history hitherto must be attacked. (Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, 1975 p. 59)” “As Budd Boetticher has put it: What counts is what the heroine provokes, or rather what she represents. She is the one, or rather the love or fear she inspires in the hero, or else the concern he feels for her, who makes him act the way he does. In herself the woman has not the slightest importance.”(Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, 1975 p. 62)” In my opinion, it would be ridiculous to make work referencing the female gaze without first noting Mulvey as it was she who coined the term ‘male gaze’ bringing it into the academic lexicon as well as shifting the orientation of film theory and bringing to light the disparity of gazes in mainstream cinema.

The Irony of Inspiration I first began investigating the theme of playfulness after visiting Jeff Koons’ exhibition in the Ashmolean last year. His use of balloons and other childish playthings inspired me to take a different approach to painting - from serious and sombre imagery and to being a little bit cheeky.

I am under no illusions though with regards to the irony behind this inspiration as I am aware that we have very different intentions behind our works. I aim to explore my imagery and use of female form from a female’s perspective/gaze depicting empowered women, taking ownership of their own sexuality in a titillating yet cheeky manner. Meanwhile, Koon’s follows in the path of centuries of (patriarchy/other male artists) objectifying women to be viewed as “objects” for heterosexual male desire. A similarity we share, however, is that Koons is interested in the sociological side of art and the impact of his work on the viewer - he aims to revive the child that lies dormant within each of us. Likewise, the effect of my work on the viewer and their perceptions of it are areas I find fascinating and relish exploring within my practice.

Bonami. F (ed.) (2008) Jeff Koons. Chicago: Yale University Press Christie’s (2013) ‘Jeff Koons (B. 1955) | Balloon Dog (Orange) | 21st Century, Sculptures, Statues & Figures’. Available at: Jones. J. (2009) ‘Jeff Koons: Not just the king of kitsch,’ The Guardian, 30 June, Available at: Koons, J., Rothkopf, S., Whitney Museum of American Art, Centre Georges Pompidou and Museo Guggenheim Bilbao (2014) Jeff Koons : a retrospective. New York: Whitney Museum of American Art. Muthesius. A (1992) Jeff Koons. Cologne: Taschen Public Delivery (2019) ‘Would You Pay $58M For Jeff Koon’s Shiny Balloon Dog?’ Available at: https://publicdelivery. org/jeff-koons-balloon-dog/ Thompson, D. (2018) The orange balloon dog : bubbles, turmoil and avarice in the contemporary art market. Minneapolis: Aurum Press. Available at: Werner Holzwarth. H (ed.) (2009) Jeff Koons. Cologne: Taschen Wyatt. D. (2013) ‘Jeff Koons’ Balloon Dog sells for record $58m along with Francis Bacon’s Freud portraits,’ The Independent, 13 November. Available at:

Emily Sparkes “My work seeks to undermine the elitism of Western History painting whilst respecting its imagery, supposing that it could still be a valid method of making, maybe as pertinent as ever? Perhaps I am drawn to paint as a transformative substance that disrupts normality.” “Through her work she aims to explore how this relates to post-modern and queer models of thought, encouraging the consideration of the fluidity, complexity, ambiguity, and intensity of the body and of painting.” “The paradoxical insistence on both motion and motionless within tableaux vivants is of great interest, and a notion of temporality that creates a sense of overlap and support founded on difference.” “...far from banal, image-sharing culture and our contemporary dependence on the screen is arguably creating a new power of the image, with emphasis on absurd humour, hysteria and play.” Emily Sparkes’ work investigates the almost inseparable pairing of painting and internet imagery. I find her work fascinating and I love her style/distinctive voice. Her use of characters, colour and composition are striking as she references both historical narratives and performance in a sophisticated yet meaningful way. I deeply regret not attending her Brookes talk but aim to take some inspiration from her in the future with regards to her use of characters and technical skills.

Celia Hempton “Hempton uses the website ‘Chatrandom’ to develop her images; a global network of video chatrooms connecting unknown strangers that is often used for masturbation... leading to a range of paintings that are dependent on the patience and the temperament of her newly acquainted subjects. Paintings where Hempton was given longer to interact with her subject have been worked and reworked whilst she intensely studies the body, whereas the more fleeting connections lead to a fluid and immediate response that is often extremely graphic or unfinished.”

One element I love about Hempton’s Chatrandom series is the ever fluctuating power play which is exchanged between her and her models. She has put herself in what is often thought of as a position of non-power yet her paintings, through the use of technology and the internet, have put the male models in the vulnerable place. “...he becomes too animated; moving around, changing position. “He’s not doing what I want,” she muses out loud. He has taken control. As if seeing her pause, brushes in the air, he resumes position – chest out, legs apart – and releases his penis. Power is exchanged again.”... “He likes being painted,” she says affectionately. Since the stream began, we still haven’t seen his face, but there seems to be a certain intimacy.” “You’re mediated by the screen and the internet. At any moment they could click off me or the connection could drop, so the power balance is complicated.” “I might get involved. But it is rare. It is important to say that I am not taking a judgemental stance with a fixed position.” She addresses issues of sexuality and gender, attractiveness and loneliness. These are all areas which I also find myself drawn to: “our most elemental buttons”.

“Inevitably Hempton’s paintings have a sexual charge. The artist’s interest, however, is not in desire per se or in creating confrontational imagery. “I am always surprised when people appear to be taken aback by an image of genitalia. I find vaginas, anuses, penises intriguing visually, but not shocking or arousing in and of themselves.” “’s something I want to investigate – ‘Why do I feel uncomfortable?’ I want to break it down and research it through the painting.” “Gustav Courbet’s L’Origine du monde (1866), with its translucent pale skin exposed beneath thick dark hair, is called to mind as is Egon Schiele’s work, or nudes by Brücke artists Max Pechstein and Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Hempton’s paintings build upon this history, problematizing the notion of the gendered gaze – Hempton speaks of different registers of sexuality and how ‘sometimes when I paint I feel like a girl, sometimes I feel like a boy.’ Are her images akin to Manet’s Olympia (1863), boldly claiming the autonomy of their subjects? The artist describes her interest in another work by Manet, The Ham (1880), delighting in its anthropomorphic character, suggested sexuality and visceral appeal.”

“For many, a relief from loneliness, rather than an orgasm, seems to be the aim.” Hempton installs her canvases “upon background wall paintings; cool, hazy washes of patchwork colour providing a broader landscape in which the nude figures perform.” (- Expanded Field of Painting?) Her portraits remind me of my last series of works - small canvases with a simple yet intense colourfully dense composition which draw the viewer in, “sucking the room into it”. Her latest paintings...are self-portraits of her genitalia, made by squatting over a mirror. “They’re all quite dark and monochrome,” she says. “A bit more intimate-looking. A bit more aggressive.” Hempton works with oil paint unlike most of her artist peers who have a more “interdisciplinary” practice. She sees it as both a necessity and a pleasure to work with paint itself: it has an“oily, sticky, slippery, crusty” materiality to it.

Eddie Peake I began looking into Peake simply because Celia Hempton, who is currently in a longterm relationship with him, mentioned him in an interview I was reading. I find her work considerably more interesting than Peake’s, however, there is no denying that they do share some similar themes; his exploration of the preconceptions of male power, gender and sexuality. To some degree I feel as though Peake’s work is attention seeking. The nudity is purposefully difficult to ignore as are his paintings: a combination of kitsch, acid-coloured spray paint with club scene imagery. “He is often naked in the large group performance pieces that he swiftly has become known for, such as ‘Touch’ (2012), a nude five-a-side football game staged at the Royal Academy Schools, where he was a student...”

“The title [‘Touch’] suggests his interest in the inherent tactility of sculpture... literally exposing the homoeroticism of male contact sports”. The performance becomes an almost homoerotic happening depending on who’s watching. Peake is a straight man and so his interest and emphasis on male nudity brings into question male intimacy and the male body - if he were gay these would all have very different meanings. ‘Touch’ also plays with the idea of power as the naked performers are constantly being watched. The men are young - at their most virile age. “Peake works with bodies, movement and music, playfully exploring physical form in all its manifestations – his ‘bodies’ become both sculptural and sexual objects via choreographed actions, encouraging the audience to give in to voyeuristic desire...” Nudity, he told the Guardian, is for him a “matter of fact, unremarkable, not shocking in any way.” “We attach semiotic register to the naked body which to me is total madness,” he continued. “Of all things in the world surely the body is the one thing which doesn’t have inherent meaning.”

“I like to think about masturbation as this horrible but addictive thing, so indicative of unrequited desire and love, so painful and depressing. It is a rich psychological and dramatic terrain.” “I wanted to explore in the most unabashed way the sexual desires I had as a person existing in the world, so I began by taking pictures of myself naked, with an erection, masturbating, posing sexily, etc.... They still mean a great deal to me because they were so un-impinged by self-conscious meaning, but instead were just direct impulse and desire – what I think art should be.” “Yes, one where there is a very distinct arc but where the specific details of the narrative are deliberately kept at bay, as in a David Lynch or a Jodorowsky film, or surrealist cinema. I want other things to be what people think about.” “Peake’s performance sought to display an alliance to LGBTIAQ+ issues, as dancers entwined with members of both the opposite and same sex, their rainbow colours quite plaintively referencing the LGBT emblem of the rainbow.”

Chantal Joffe

Jenny Saville

“Joffe paints in a loosely gestural and expressive style that often relies on mainstream fashion magazines for source material.” “...Joffe’s soulful images of women drill deep into the psyche, creating an emotionally and psychologically charged atmosphere.” “...the distortions of scale and form can often make a subject seem more real.” “Her work—in its use of expressive marks, vigorous colour and raw, crude surfaces — is definitively painterly.” “Joffe’s paintings always alert us to how appearances are carefully constructed and codified, whether in a fashion magazine or the family album, and to the choreography of display.” “[she] questions assumptions about what makes a noble subject for art and challenges what our expectations of a feminist art might be.” “For Joffe, notions of sensuality and self-disclosure are parcelled up in works of mobile immediacy. Tensions between the scale of the work and the apparent intimacy of the scene depicted heighten already complex narratives about connection, perception and representation that, implicit in the relationship between artist and subject, are extended to the viewer as a series of propositions and provocations.” “Her technique is at times reminiscent of Alice Neel’s emotional, psychologically probing paintings, and Joffe has cited famed American photographer Diane Arbus as an important influence to her work.” I am not particularly a fan of Joffe’s work. I find her undertsated disproportionate and loose figurative paintings somewhat dull, and, for lack of a better word, juvenile-looking. I, personally, prefer paintings where I see the time and high level of skill and technique used to create a captivating work of art.

“Saville reinvigorated contemporary figurative painting by challenging the limits of the genre and raising questions about society’s perception of the body and its potential” “I want to be a painter of modern life, and modern bodies, those that emulate contemporary life, they’re what I find most interesting.” “I’m not painting disgusting, big women. I’m painting women who’ve been made to think they’re big and disgusting.” In this...Saville subverts traditional notions of female beauty and femininity that have long dominated Western art.” “The work challenges the typical female nude (which is small, delicate, and ‘beautiful’) by making a huge painting with thick paint, which looks down on the viewer and flows out of the edges of the picture plane.” “This led in turn to Closed Contact, a series of photographs by the fashion photographer, Glen Luchford, of Saville’s naked body pressed against Perspex and shot from below (Saville fattened herself up for this, the better that her flesh appear squashed and distorted).” “In the striking faces, jumbled limbs, and tumbling folds of her paintings, one may perceive echoes of Titian’s Venus of Urbino (c. 1532), Rubens’s Christ in the Descent from the Cross (1612–14), Manet’s Olympia (1863), and faces and bodies culled from magazines and tabloid newspapers.” “It is odd to be showing in Britain. I’ve been shown a lot in America; that’s my favourite place to show. We’re quite conceptually driven in Britain. There’s less guilt about being a painter over there.”...” In Britain, there has been a drive in art schools to describe and to rationalise what it is that you’re making, and that is a death knell to painting. Painting doesn’t operate like that.” I love her paintings: her use of perspective - something I looked at last semester and continue to investigate in my work - and texture (both that of her painting style and by writing/scraping away the paint on the canvas), composition, colour mixing etc. She looks into themes that I myself am drawn to, such as traditional notions of female beauty and the female gaze, and I find her paintings emotive and captivating - outcomes which I have always hoped to achieve through my own work.

Combine painting:

The Expanded Field of Painting What is the expanded field of painting? The EFP is a three-dimensional, spatialised and hybrid practice which combines installation strategies and techniques, objects and design to explore painterly concerns such as: colour, composition and figure/ ground relationships. Writers such as Ring Petersen, Harris, Peter Wiebel, Stephen Melville, Barry Schwabsky, David Batchelor, David Ryan, Paco Barragan and Mark Titmarsh have discussed aspects of this newly identified genre but as a relatively new area of study in art and has, so far, remained largely underexplored. The Danish art historian Anne Ring Petersen has defined it as being ‘the name for an exploration and extension of [certain] implicated conceptual and physical resources’ that has moved beyond the framed surface of the canvas and its boundaries. Petersen characterised EFP as the tendency for painters: …to explore the possibilities of broadening the definition of what constitutes ‘space’ in relation to painting.

A combine painting is an artwork that incorporates various objects into a painted canvas surface, creating a sort of hybrid between painting and sculpture. The term is most closely associated with the artwork of American artist Robert Rauschenberg Rauschenberg’s Combines (e.g. “Canyon” 1959) explored the blurry boundaries between art and the everyday world. In addition, his cross-medium creations challenged the doctrine of medium specificity mentioned by modernist art critic Clement Greenberg.

“Painting has been kept going by embracing rather than resisting that which might extinguish it, and this has included embracing the possibility of painting becoming all but indistinguishable from a paint job. It has also included the possibility of paintings becoming all but indistinguishable from objects, photographs, texts and so forth. But while painting has shown itself to be capable of absorbing these things, it is equally possible that painting might itself be absorbed by them.” (David Batchelor, Chromophobia, Reaktion, London, 2000, p. 101.)

How did it come about? It has identifiable roots in abject art, installation art, minimalism, conceptualism, arte povera, fluxus, Rauschenberg, Pollock, Duchamp and Picasso etc. The term ‘the expanded field of painting’ is borrowed and adapted from Rosalind Krauss and her essay “Sculpture in the expanded field”. Krauss examines how the term sculpture should be re-defined in a post-modern practice that had moved beyond a purely formalist agenda. Krauss noted that ‘rather surprising things have come to be called sculpture’ and that the category of sculpture was being stretched so as to be ‘infinitely malleable’. Since the late 1960s, painting, as well as sculpture, has been extended so much that it has merged with new media, drawing, sculpture, installation, architecture, film, the ready-made, and performance.

While expanded painting has not yet been defined, and is in some sense undefinable, it functions as a field of possibilities that questions what painting is and what it can become. What makes a painting a painting? - “…every time you come up with an answer, you can think of something to contradict it.” Dan Cameron, Senior Curator at New York’s New Museum of Contemporary Art. Today much of the experimental energy is put into expanding the medium physically by exploring painting’s relations to objects, space, place, and various aspects of everyday culture.

2010. Margie Livingston: Painting As Sculpture. [video] Available at: watch?v=eBSzP19LNBo& Armstrong, P., Lisbon, L., & Melville, S. (2001). As Painting: Division and Displacement (p. 74). Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. Batchelor, D. (2000) Chromophobia. 10th ed. London: Reaktion (Focus on contemporary issues) pp.97-102. Bishop, C. (2005). But is it installation art?. From it-installation-art Cambridge University Press. Sculpture. Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus. Retrieved from Clapham, C. and Nicholson, J., 2009. The Concise Oxford Dictionary Of Mathematics.. 4th ed. Oxford University Press, pp.252,253. Crawford, J. and Wilson, S., 2019. Keeping Painting In Its Place: The Refusal Of The Expanded Field. In: The Association for Art History’s Annual Conference. [online] Association for Art History. Available at: Davidson, F. (2019). Expanded Painting Display – Tate Modern [Blog]. Retrieved from https://

Kerr, D., 2016. How To Understand Rosalind Krauss, The Art Critic Who Made Theory Cool (And Inescapable). [online] Artspace. Available at: Krauss, R., 1979. Sculpture in the Expanded Field. October, [online] 8, pp.30-41. Available at: https:// Lickstein, S., 2011. Margie Livingston – Paint Objects. [online] Available at: Marshall, R., 2015. Retracing The Expanded Field. [online] 3:AM Magazine. Available at: https:// Mataraga, F., 2012. Colour, Space, Composition: Painting In The Expanded Field. Ph.D. College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales. Medium. 2019. Difference Between Painting And Sculpture. [online] Available at: https://medium. com/@fansaiensunny/difference-between-painting-and-sculpture-c76369249ca9 Map Of China. [online] Available at: search/77469 Patrick, J., 2013. 5 Artists Expanding The (Painting) Field, From The Midwest. [online] Available at:

De Jesus, L. (2020). Margie Livingston. From

Perreault, J. (2006). RAUSCHENBERG’S COMBINES | Artopia. From: artopia/2006/01/rauschenbergs_combines.html

Dorman, A. (2016). FLIGHT, St James’s Piccadilly: 20 December - 8 February 2016. From: http://www.

Petersen, A., Bogh, M., Christensen, H., & Larsen, P. (2010). Contemporary painting in context. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press, University of Copenhagen.

Enright, R., 2018. Painting In An Expanded Field. [online] Available at: https://

Phillips. n.d. Ai Weiwei - Map Of China. [online] Available at: UK010617/20 2015. The Expanded Field. [online] Available at: http://

Searle, A. (2006). Stuff happens. Retrieved 11 November 2020, from artanddesign/2006/nov/28/art1

Fares, G., 2004. Painting in the Expanded Field. Janus Head, [online] Volume 7(Issue 2). Available at:

Sotheby’s. n.d. Ai Weiwei MAP OF CHINA. [online] Available at: auctions/ecatalogue/2016/contemporary-art-evening-l16022/lot.29.html

Godfrey, M., Expanded Painting – Display At Tate Modern | Tate. [online] Tate. Available at: https:// late,with%20acts%20of%20symbolic%20violence

TITMARSH, M., 2006. Shapes of inhabitation: Painting in the expanded field. ART MONTHLY

Grosenick, U. and Schübbe, C., 2007. China Art Book. Köln: DuMont Literatur und Kunst Verlag GmbH & Co KG, p.31.

Tomkins, C. (1964). Profiles: Moving Out. The New Yorker, (40), 59.

Grosse, K. (2017). Katherina Grosse discusses her process with Louise Neri. Gasgosian Quarterly. Available at: Hegarty, V. Valerie Hegarty - Flower Frenzy (detail). From: artwork/2818901_Flower_Frenzy_detail.html Holcomb Hale, k. (2011). From: Installation art – Art Term | Tate. From: Jones, J. (2015). Flight by Arabella Dorman review: relic of a rough crossing illustrates refugee crisis. The Guardian. Retrieved from Katharina Grosse. (2020). From:

AUSTRALIA, [online] (189), pp.27-32. Available at: omnibuilder/undefined/f241a18f-9e16-4969-aefb-87efd319b370.pdf n.d. The Expanded Field Of Drawing - The Slade School Of Fine Art. [online] Available at: Weiwei, A and WARSH, L., 2013. Weiwei-Isms. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton Univ. Pr., p.80. Williams, G., 2012. Ground Control: Painting in the Work of Cosima von Bonin. Art Journal, 71(4), pp.88-103. 2010. Preview Of Margie Livingston At Luis De Jesus (Coming Jan 22, 2011). [online] Available at: YABLONSKY, L., 2005. What Makes A Painting A Painting? – Artnews.Com. [online] Available at:

Francis Bacon Cecily Brown on Francis Bacon: “She also goes on to explain how she thinks Bacon exploited the glass used to frame his pictures “which refuses a single point of view; you have to move around as you look at them; you have to shift slightly,” “I think he relied on the glass a lot, but he’s clever in directing the way the viewer looks. You can’t just get it straightaway.” The glass in front of the painting: reflectivity in Francis Bacon’s exhibitions from a textual-semiotic perspective:

becomes reflective. The painting… works as the amalgam, so that the glass that is ‘coated’ with it becomes a mirror” (ibid: para. 2).” A note on Francis Bacon’s frames: “Bacon typically used three identifiable frame patterns for his paintings: a wedge section; a cavetto; and a box frame with a coloured hessian or silk slip, chosen for smaller paintings.” “It has often been suggested that reflections caused by glazing are an effect desired by Bacon and that they add in some way to the scrambling of forms. However, interviewed by the art critic David Sylvester in the early 1970’s, regarding reflections, Bacon is emphatic, ‘I don’t want them to be there’. He expands on the subject of glazing, stating that because of ‘the very flat way I paint’ with ‘no varnishes’, the glass helps to ‘unify the picture” “During Bacon’s lifetime there was not an alternative to ordinary glass with its inherent reflective qualities, as low reflective glass has only subsequently become available. Bacon stated that ‘to want the person reflected in the glass of a dark painting is illogical and has no meaning. I think it’s just one of those misfortunes. I hope they’ll make glass soon which doesn’t reflect.”

“...what are the relevant properties of the glass as material that justify its instalment in front of a work of art. The most obvious one... is its transparency: it enables the viewer to see what is behind it. The most effective one... is its insulative capacity: it protects what is behind it from being directly, physically touched or otherwise accessed and harmed; this quality of the glass, when it comes to its usage within the context of an art exhibition space, serves the usual “conservation considerations, or protection against the most insane threats from the public” (Poprzęcka, 2010: para. 1). The third, perhaps distracting, property of the glass is its reflectivity: “Glass is transparent. But when placed on a non-transparent surface, it

Even though it was not intentional, I find Bacon’s use of glass in front of his paintings exciting. It is not dissimilar to my “Through the Looking Glass” oil painting from last semester - where a Perspex screen is attached to the front of my painting suggestive of being in the shower alone with your body and private thoughts. The idea of having the viewer see themselves looking/ reflected back to them, whilst also being able to see the painting is a very intriguing idea to me. The work would not only be what the painting is communicating but would simultaneously be acting as a mirror throwing the spotlight back on the individual viewer. ‘How does this reflect on you?’

Valerie Hegarty “Hegarty... makes paintings, sculptures and installations that explore issues of memory, place and history. Hegarty relishes the materiality of her process and her works often incorporate a range of layered materials such as canvas, wood, Foamcore, paper-mache, and ceramics.” “...the painting is more factual now that it doesn’t just depict an experience, but instead, actually goes through an experience.” “I’m breaking these paintings after spending months making them and getting attached to them.” “...there’s this aspect of frozen animation—catching something as it’s changing. The fragments are starting to transform but haven’t yet completely. It’s an exciting thing to experiment with—this pivotal moment when things are changing and becoming and hopefully moving forward.” Valerie Hegarty ‘s installations create dreamlike transitional spaces that expand and fracture the austerity of an exhibition space while dismantling the constructs of image making. On one level the viewer can become overwhelmed with an inquisitive desire to determine what is real and what is constructed and on another, can decide to revel in the make-believe.

https://valeriehegarty. com/artwork/1842282_ Among_the_Sierras_ with_Woodpecker.html https://www. artists/valerie_hegarty. htm https://www. valerie-hegarty valerie_hegarty

I absolutely love Hegarty’s work. They are like nothing I have ever seen before; they are immersive, absorbing and emotionally impactful. I would love to be able to take inspiration from her with regards to my oil paintings - they have that 3D/exciting element that makes it more than just an oil painting. It is something altogether different - it is an experience. The paintings interact with the room and its viewers. They are made more real - the image is almost tangible.

Jader inspired Photoshoot

Photoshop Experiments Below are some photoshop experiments I created in order to visualise what the vague overall compositions would look like if I were to paint on three stacked acrylic sheets similar to Jader. Once I had selected the photos , I opened them up in Photoshop and removed the backgrounds before layering them on top of each other, I then altered the opacity and edited the photographs to my desired hues. The photoshoot consisted of taking burst photos whilst I instructed my model to move in various ways. I managed to get a couple of promising shots, however, I do not feel as though it was a highly successful shoot. This was due to the fact that we did not have certain external factors - which Jader uses as tools in her photoshoot repertoire, a trampoline, for example. This was also the first time I had ever shot using the burst function on my camera and so took some time to get used to. In my opinion, the more simple the movement, the more effective the composition. I am curious to see how this translates onto my frosted acrylic sheets as I have never properly painted on that material.

I revisited the photoshopped image and one by one saved each layer individually - turning the opacity back up to 100% to get a clear understanding of the photograph. I then began painting onto my acrylic sheets. This was a very frustrating experience - this is because everytime I painted an area and was happy with the blending etc I would then lift it up against the white of the wall and it would be all patchy and streaky! I would then spend ages try to smooth it out but there’s little I could do. Its like pushing oil paint around on a piece of plastic - it doesn’t stick or absorb. I am hoping that when I go back this afternoon it will have stuck more to the acrylic and I can continue painting and layer on top but I’m not too hopeful. I wonder whether painting with acrylic would be more effective..?

This is the image I decided to experiment with and try painting onto my acrylic sheets. I cropped the composition down to concentrate on the area I was most interested in - the movement of the breast.


Acrylic Sheet Experiments

Stacking The Panels

As mentioned previoulsy, painting on acrylic sheets is very frustrating as it doesn’t stick, absorb or blend satisfactorily. This is a very different experience, and material, to painting on canvas and so should treated like so. I was subconciously treating the acrylic sheets as I would any canvas painting, leading me to become highly frustrated and unsatisfied with the results.

When stacked, it was more effective when the most rendered (most painted) panel was at the back of the stack and the least painted panel was at the front. This was because the paint acted as a barrier to whatever was behind it.

From this, I began to experiment with absence and presence, teasing the viewer by only allowing them to see what I permitted. I left certain areas without paint so that when stacked, you could see straight through to the sheet underneath. This was intriguing as it meant that the paint acted as both a barrier and a window to an image.

Should have left it how it was - over worked it.

Note: These are lying on to of each other - not stacked with distance in between them.

So, I decided to adopt a different technique and treat it almost as a line drawing, only applying paint in areas of shadow to create the shape I wanted. This was more effective, in my opinion, as it utilised the acrylic’s innate translucent materiality.

In addition, the frosted nature of the acrylic was hindering the layering process as I would have to stack them close together otherwise they would blur into a colourful haze behind each other and not illustrate the movement of the body as was my intention.

Glass Experiments

Hannah Wilke

The rigid perfectly manufactured A4 acrylic sheets jarred with me though. Although I think it is effective in Jader’s paintings, the sterile commercial nature of them felt wrong to me. I recalled that there was a derelict building near to my house full of broken window panes and so travelled back to collect some.

“a radical feminist artist working in drawing, sculpture, performance, photography and video”

I preferred the broken windowpanes unpredictable shapes with history - and experimented with painting on different sized shards of glass to investigate further the power of the small image.

“...challenged dialogues around art and gender” and “aimed to question prevailing cultural notions about women and female sexuality” “The artist’s conceptual works were often intimately bound to her own body” “Considered somewhat controversial for the use of her own (generally considered) attractive body in works meant to challenge traditional notions of feminine desirability” “The art critic Ann-Sargent Wooster said that Wilke’s identification with the feminist movement was confusing because of her beauty — her self-portraitures looked more like a Playboy centerfold than the typical feminist nudes. According to Wooster: “The problem Wilke faced in being taken seriously is that she was conventionally beautiful and her beauty and self-absorbed narcissism distracted you from her reversal of the voyeurism inherent in women as sex objects. In her photographs of herself as a goddess, a living incarnation of great works of art or as a pin-up, she wrested the means of production of the female image from male hands and put them in her own.” “If critics found Wilke’s beauty an impediment to understanding her work, this changed in the early 1990s when Wilke began documenting the decay of her body ravaged by lymphoma. Wilke’s use of self-portraiture has been explored in detail in writing about her last photographic series, Intra Venus.” “Wilke was diagnosed with cancer and... Shortly before she died, she photographed herself naked in the hospital, her emaciated body connected to an intravenous drip and her head bald from her treatments. These large, colour photographs were Wilke’s last testament to the art world before she died”

Thoughts: - The small size of the glass paintings remind me of momentos - you want to pick them up and touch them. ^This is intriguing as they are dangerous sharp objects (broken glass). - Wonder if they’d be more effective if I hadn’t scaled down the image to fit the shard of glass - i.e. a piece of glass = a piece of an image. - Feel like these have lost the ‘playfulness’ of previous work - too serious. - The compostion of the image on the glass is very frontal - need a more dynamic angle.

Alison Watt - still life paintings

Trompe L’Oeil

“The longer I look at drapery in painting, the more I seem to lose my connection with its original purpose,” she has explained. “It begins to suggest other things to me and becomes a boundary between abstraction and figuration.”

“Trompe l’oeil is French for “to deceive the eye”, an art historical tradition in which the artist fools us into thinking we’re looking at the real thing. Whether it’s a painted fly that we’re tempted to brush away, or an illusionistic piece of paper with curling edges that entices us to pick it up, trompe l’oeil makes us question the boundary between the painted world and ours. “

“Watt’s paintings of the last fifteen years have focused primarily on images of draped cloth, using this motif to explore ideas about the human body through an interplay of presence and absence.”

“... to deceive the viewer concerning the material reality of the object.”

“If O’Keeffe’s paintings are intensely physical, Watt’s are discarnate, untouched by the messy heat of real bodies: no blood rushes through these folds.”

“used to describe paintings that create the illusion of a real object or scene” “The earliest account of trompe l’oeil comes from ancient Greece, where a contest took place between two prominent artists, Zeuxis and Parrhasius.” I love the playful, cheeky nature of this. It’s teasing, humorous and mischievous, yet requires a lot of skill to pull it off. Jean-Étienne Liotard’s Trompe l’oeil paintings are a great example of this - a highly skilled portrait painter doubled with a sense of humour – what more could you want!

“Watt’s new works constitute an interrogation of the genre of still life. The starting point for this body of work was an extended meditation upon Thomas Warrender’s Still Life (1708) in the Scottish National Gallery, a trompe-l’oeil depiction of a letter rack” “The Sun Never Knew How Wonderful It Was’ at Parafin, Watt’s first exhibition in London since a solo show at the National Gallery in 2008, focuses on 12 trompe l’oeil oil paintings of suggestively composed fabric.” I have always loved Watt’s work and have drawn on her Ivory fabric paintings in depth in the past, however, I have never researched her still life works. They are deceiving in the best possible way; you feel as though you could reach out and pick [the paper] up.

Anamorphosis “Anamorphosis, in the visual arts, an ingenious perspective technique that gives a distorted image of the subject represented in a picture when seen from the usual viewpoint but so executed that if viewed from a particular angle, or reflected in a curved mirror, the distortion disappears and the image in the picture appears normal.” “There are two main types of anamorphosis: perspective (oblique) and mirror (catoptric). More complex anamorphoses can be devised using distorted lenses, mirrors, or other optical transformations. “With mirror anamorphosis, a conical or cylindrical mirror is placed on the drawing or painting to transform a flat distorted image into an apparently undistorted picture. The deformed image is created by using the laws of the angles of the incidence of reflection. This reduces the length of the flat drawing’s curves when the image is viewed in a curved mirror, so that the distortions resolve into a recognizable picture.” I came across this while researching. I love the ambiguous nature of it as, when viewed without the cylindrical mirror, it is often indecipherable - like a secret code. I would be very interested to use this method to create a painting - though I have no idea how to construct it! campaign=organic

Photoshoot with Glass

Photoshoot with Glass 2.0 One composition I could never try in my last photoshoot was the concept of the glass pushing/poking into the breast of the model. This was due to the fact that the model did not want to cut themselves and was worried about the danger aspect, so I found a different willing participant and used them for a quick photoshoot. I wanted to explore this concept due to the danger aspect of the broken glass. Throughout history, the breast has signified womanhood, the giver of life and also Madonna versus whore and so I was intrigued what different people’s perceptions would be about the image. The images looked virginal and pure, although the red of the nail varnish could signify promiscuity, and so were in juxtaposition to the shard of broken glass stabbing into the skin of the breast. Many of the images looked as if the model were attempting to stab herself in the heart – due to the positioning of the blade and the fact that one’s heart is towards the left side of the breast. This was an interesting development, however, the cheeky, playful element of my imagery has been lost again. Although it must be said that trying to intertwine cheekiness with broken glass is no easy feat!

I knew I wanted to incorporate the female form with use of glass and so I decided to conduct a photoshoot to see if this would help me visualise a path to go down. We experimented with squishing my model against glass panes – reminiscent of Jenny Saville and Glen Luchford’s ‘Closed Contact’ collaboration (2002) – as well as playing around with various glass objects such as a magnifying glass and some drinking glasses. My favourite photos from this shoot were the ones where my model was pressed against the window pane - and when she’s just laughing and chatting with me hanging outside the window - this was because we had the most fun doing these and so I believe that these playful cheeky elements can be felt through the images. I also love the poetic lighting, the detail in the skin, and the reflections of the trees and houses on the windowpanes. They create a poetic and cinematic vision.

Ideas: - Change colour scheme. - Do an anamorphic painting. - Use a playful photo and overlay shards of glass ontop to distort it. - Attach a sheet of glass over my painting with the reflections (of trees and houses) painted on. - Paint the magnified nipple on the glass as if it has magnifying qualities. - Paint on canvas as usual - paying special attention to the 3D-ness of the glass in my photos. - Paint a broken window pane in front of model with one shard of glass having been removed which the model is stabbing into her breast - either 2D or 3D.

Photoshop Experiments

Oliver Osborne

Here are two Photoshop experiments I created with one of the photos selected from the photoshoot. I was playing around with the concept of a broken window pane painted on top of the image. The shard of glass which the model is holding having been removed from this window pane to stab herself. The blade could be either painted in or an actual piece of glass attached to the canvas. On this piece of broken glass, there would be reflections – seen in the prior photoshoot – of trees and houses painted onto it.

“As well as addressing the theme of time passing and painting as labour, Osborne’s works demonstrate conceptual stoicism.”

Neither of these two experiments are finished as I was simply playing around with the concept late at night and am not sure whether I will be taking any of these ideas forward. This is because, although I like the cinematic narrative that the images instil, they are not playful nor teasing and instead have a more sinister/serious implication to them.

“Oliver Osborne’s paintings function together as a sort of slightly uncomfortable language with its own visual grammar. The juxtaposition of images creates the same sort of puzzlement we encounter when trying to comprehend and master foreign languages.”

“Rather than an emphatically natural depiction, the overlapping rubber-plant leaves, rendered in photorealist perfection, resemble a digital composition – an effect amplified by the vanilla-coloured void of the background.”

“This depiction of emptiness suggests that Osborne touches the painterly problem of representing the nonrepresentable.” “He also experiments with collages, placing mixed media in the foreground against simplified and neutral backgrounds. Mixing genres and styles, Osborne investigates associated meanings and creates unusual combinations of abstraction, figuration, and found images.”

I attempted to Photoshop another more playful image to see what it would look like if there were shards of glass on top of the image distorting it. I followed a YouTube video by the Photoshop Training Channel on how to create a ‘Broken Glass Effect In Photoshop’ but this took a VERY long time and due to technical difficulties – as I do not have an Adobe Stock licence (or anything similar) – it was not effective to the degree I was hoping for so did not waste time doing the rest of the shards. I think that if I am to continue with this effect, I should just eyeball it on the painting. watch?v=zKGfknTggDs&feature=emb_logo

Osborne: “I like to think of painting, and oil painting in particular, as a technology that I can use to produce images. It’s a technology that is flexible, crude and technical. The fascinating diversity in its recent history (from Ingres to Krebber perhaps) gives huge scope to painters today […] I’m often trying to figure out orthodoxy, which in painting is actually very hard to pinpoint.” I find Osborne’s paintings frustrating. Part of me loves his juxtapositions and deadpan imagery whilst another part of me just finds them dull and boring. I like his use of layering as it almost reminds me of when I Photoshop my compositions together before starting painting - yet these are his finished artworks, in this way, they sort of remind me of Jamian Juliano-Villani. I also like his technique of playing around with two different realities - the layering of both depicted reality and then the flatness of painting.

Broken Glass

Final Composition I hit a bit of a roadblock – the challenge of trying to maintain that playful cheekiness from my last project whilst attempting to combine the female body and the danger aspect of broken glass just seemed like an inconsistent triad - you can’t have all three and it make logical sense.

Inconsistent Triad Playful/cheeky

Female body

The breakthrough came when I discarded the broken glass focusing instead on a more playful, if not ridiculous, image by creating a compositional collage of 2 pictures. This image would be the model’s body pressed against the pane of glass with a 3D whipped cream smiley face adorned on top. I’m planning on not painting the pane of glass as the pose innately suggests the presence of the glass pane through perspective/angle and the fact that the body is flattened. This would create a sort of double illusion: by not painting the glass the viewer is confounded as to what she is pressed up against – the back of the canvas? Glass we cannot see? Glass can be used to protect, reveal or spectacularise something. My painting could, therefore, be seen as spectacularising the body, problematising the representation of the female form. In my opinion, from this inquiry alone, I have successfully created an ambiguous viewing experience, allowing each viewer’s interpretation to draw on their own imagination and prejudices. The final addition of whipped cream would almost deface the painting, like graffiti, and cancel out the seriousness and danger of the glass. The glass acts as a reiteration of the picture plane almost doubling it and acting as a window on top of a window: the image itself and the 3D of the cream.

Marc Quinn - Chelsea Charms “All the human subjects of these works have undergone plastic surgery to change their biological identity and physical shape” “Quinn’s sculptures seem like mythological figures, whose identity has shifted from reality into fantasy” “These new sculptures explore the relationship between physicality and spirituality, between identity and humanity. Whilst modelled on the real-life people listed in the title and true to life, you may not think so at first sight.” “Quinn has always been fascinated by the human body and the dubious concept of normality. “The world is so weird that you don’t have to make things up, you just find things.” “The sculpture of Chelsea Charms is life-size and disarmingly small. She is virtually all bosom. What interested Quinn was the fact that, apart from her breasts, she has had no plastic surgery. “With these absurdly huge breasts and a totally natural face, she is like a hallucination.” Does he find her beautiful? “It’s a different kind of beauty. It’s so classical, in a way – like a Venus of Willendorf come to life.” “Chelsea Charms is somewhere between an erotic figure and a disturbing one” I began researching Marc Quinn’s Chelsea Charms as a result of a tutorial with Paul. He said that my imagery reminded him of Miss Charms - assuming that the body that I was painting was not a natural one ie. that it was a work about cosmetic intervention. I find Quinn’s work and his fascination of paradoxes highly intriguing. His sculptures are captivating and have a sense of the fantastical/mystical about them which captures my imagination. I also love his attention paid to the drapery - it gives his sculptures a sense of movement as well as connecting them to classic sculptures made centuries before. Although his work could be seen as a series of sculptures depicting ‘freaks’, I believe that to some extent his works aim to normalise all human forms - natural and constructed.

“Untitled” - Oil Paint on Canvas (A4)

Final Painting

I think my final painting is effective as it is ridiculous and playful yet self-aware, evoking depth whilst prompting the viewer to question their own accountability. The crop, somewhat reminiscent of a selfie, implicates both viewer and model as it requires the viewer to occupy her headspace. The viewer’s gaze is intercepted and relayed back to them. Who’s doing the looking? What judgements/preconceptions will they make about themselves, the painter, and the painted? The cropped image creates a lack of identity whilst the artificial colours and construction suggest a dialogue about cosmetic intervention. The small scale of the painting, in this instance, is almost like a mirror image, and thus could be seen as voyeuristic rather than a celebration of the flesh. The image is inescapable as it fills the entire canvas - a melange of the ridiculous and the raw.

Final Thoughts I regret not working on multiple paintings simultaneously like I did last semester as, among other things, it puts pressure on this one painting - it has to work! Plus painting on glass forced me to paint in different ways to how I usually would and so having not painted on canvas for the majority of semester, I was out of practice when returning to oils on canvas. This was highly frustrating; not to mention that I was also painting a much more challenging image with time pressure. Although the canvas was the same size as last semester’s series, the image itself was a lot smaller/zoomed out. This meant that rather than painting part of a torso, I was painting everything from the head to the hips of my model - with the same surface space! Still, I persevered: I bought some smaller brushes which helped immensly with the process and delved deep into hidden stores of patience. The finale of whipped cream was a very nervewracking experience! Although I had done it before, this was on a much smaller scale with much less space - so I had no room to mess up. Mess up and a finger’s gone or the nipple’s vanished! Overall, I am very pleased with my painting as not only did I manage to complete it in the limited time frame, but I also achieved everything I had set out to do. I managed to combine the body, glass and keep it playful.