Thursday, November 21, 2013


Here's another work of art that recently arrested my attention on Tumblr. I've always been interested in art, and particularly drawing, that has a realistic center of interest that seems to emerge out of the act of drawing, in some sense displaying both the product and the process. This drawing, but Sir William Russell Flint (via cacao tree) does that.

The foreground is sketched, the mountains in the background are partially rendered, and the most carefully rendered and darkest areas are in the middle of the picture.  I love the strip of light blue on the right, and in fact the whole horizontal stripe of colors running across the painting just below center holds the whole thing together for me in a way that feels grounded and solid, even though the top and the bottom essentially evaporate. I like the way the mound of earth leading into the center of the picture from the lower left starts as pencil line and takes on color and mass as it recedes toward the center. I like the feel of the piece, the way the picture seems to come alive on the paper. If the whole thing had been colored and the details filled in, it would have become pretty much just another landscape, and would have been of much less interest to me. As it is, it generates in me a feeling of peacefulness as I look at it,  as it illustrates and speaks to the watchfulness of its making. A lot of art seems to want to erase or disguise all evidence of its gestation. I'm drawn to art that includes that evidence. Here's another such drawing, "The Door to Freedom," by the often disturbing but always interesting Egon Schiele (via iamjapanese):

The door is sketched. The lock is painted, and the eye is drawn through the bars above the door to the color of the outside world. Less is more.

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