Friday, October 1, 2010
Here's the completed painting of my studio that I had been working on since early summer. Between the drawing, the in-progress version, and this one, I was able chronicle the development of this painting over several months. Nothing changed too much from my initial idea to it's completion, but the sustained observation of the scene allowed me to explore the surfaces and textures of the room to the fullest.
My favorite part to paint was the floor. Stained with random drips and splatters from various 'projects', it began to take on an abstraction of form, with floating blobs of color, very tangible in front of me, slipping back and forth on the surface plane of the floor. This is something that I want to explore more in the future; depicting patterns as they sit on planes in space, and how they can cause one's sense of vision to become disoriented. (I'm thinking in particular of the rug in the "Parlor" painting I did over the winter.)
I was also able to include in a few subtle references to painters whom I admire, and have had a great influence on my work. The composition is very Alberto Giacometti, with his bowling alley-type compositions (actually an anti-Giacometti, with this one culminating in the absence of a figure.) The scaffolding and grid of the painting rack also echo the mark-making structure of his paintings. And Lucien Freud's work has been a huge inspiration for me, with his paintings about the setting and function of the artist's studio, as well as, his description of the peripheral things next to his models, like soiled rags, paint stains, and floor boards. Sometimes he also includes paintings of paintings in his painting (meta-painting, I guess?), which I did by including some previous work on the studio walls, along with my portable easel and palette on the table.
I'm pleased with the painting's sense of light. Although my studio has a mixture of fluorescent and spot lamps, and not natural light, the constancy of it while painting was reassuring. In order to get the fluorescent tubes at the top of the painting as bright as possible, I refrained from painting over the white ground (the tubes are actually the white of the gesso.) I'm looking forward to where this will lead me next...