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a blog of painting, abstraction, and contemporary art
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An Expression of Rightness

I never seem to make it over to the New York Studio School’s evening lecture series…and always come across the highlights somewhere after the fact. We have Harry over at Daily Gusto to thank for reminding us of Pat Lipsky‘s talk last week and this example of her lyrical abstractions. Also with Ellen Phelen’s recent comments on beauty still fresh in my mind, it was nice to read this little bit here,

Ms. Lipsky, whose work is mostly abstract and geometrical, gave a cool and elegant defense of painting as the formal practice of creating beauty. She quoted Mark Rothko, saying, “An expression of beauty is an expression of rightness.” {Read more…}

Pat Lipsky, Spiked Red, 1969

Pat Lipsky, Spiked Red, 1969

(via Daily Gusto)

The are more wonderful recent paintings posted on her website. I am particularly drawn to the cold light of two paintings Dowager and Colbalt.

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February 9, 2009   No Comments

Charmed by Colour

I recently picked up Colours by David Batchelor and this morning I was reading a piece by Charles Blanc written in 1867. He comes from a 19th century background that favours drawing/draughtsman/form over colour/colourists. What’s funny is that while the overall implication of his writting is that pure chiaroscuro drawing is the pinnacle of art, he says some things that are right on about colour, and, in my opinion undermine his assumptions . Here are a few excerpts:

…colour is mobile, vague, intangible element, while form, on the contrary, is precise, limited, palpable and constant…

Thus colourists can charm us by means that science has discovered. But the taste for colour, when it predominates absolutely, costs many sacrifices; often it turns the mind from its course, changes the sentiment, swallows up the thought. The impassioned colourist invents his [her] form for his colour, everything is subordinated to the brilliancy of his [her] tints. Not onlythe drawing bends to it, but the composition is dominated, restrained, forced by the colour.

 The predominance of colour at the expense of drawing is a usurpation of the relative over the absolute, of fleeting appearance over permanent form…

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December 18, 2008   No Comments