Knowing Abstract Painting : Component 4


“I don’t know much about art, but I know very well what I love “.This cliché is definitely an expression that has been said in many ways by many people. Knowing what you like is an excellent thing…being unknowledgeable is not. I wish to make the case for educating yourself about art in order to better enjoy it. I’ll focus on an event I’d while in a painting workshop taught by Donna Watson.

Donna is definitely an accomplished painter who started her career painting scenes of clapboard houses and the lovely azalea bushes of her Northwestern town near Seattle. She changed her direction to one of nonobjective abstracts that may incorporate a small animal skull or birds nest as part of its mixed media ingredients. She is a knowledgeable artist and her goal in the workshop was to create us more knowledgeable artists. Among the exercises she put us through underscored that goal.

Donna grouped us around a projector and told us that people were to imagine that people were judges for a nearby art show and would be deciding which paintings submitted by artists would be included in the show and those would be “juried out “.(This is a procedure utilized in most local and all regional and national shows to insure that the quality of the show is substantial.) Donna would project a slide of a bit of artwork and we would vote by a hand raised when we thought this piece must certanly be included abstract painting black and white. After the voting, we had a quick discussion during which those that voted the piece in would express their reasons for including the job and those that voted it out would explain why they thought it must be excluded.

Every piece had its supporters and naysayers, often split 50-50. Then your last slide was shown. It absolutely was a fairly mundane painting of an art form studio sink. Every hand went up. For the very first time we were unanimous within our approval of the piece. That slide was a “ringer “.Donna had inserted among every one of the amateur pieces, a little known painting of a global renowned abstract expressionist, Richard Diebenkorn. None of us recognized the work. We’d no idea that it had been by a famous artist, but most of us saw the worth of the piece. That which was it concerning this painting that caused it to be stand out from the rest? Why did most of us vote it in?

The band of people “judging” were all amateur artists. We work on creating art. We look at lots of art. We study art. We have developed a palette for recognizing excellence in art. We approached this exercise with at the least some education about art and our education gave us some typically common ground where to judge. Let me make a comparison from another creative endeavor, winemaking.

I are now living in wine country. A typical weekend pastime for my husband and I and friends is to visit wineries for tastings. At the wineries, we often receive instruction about what to look for in the wine, how to smell it and taste it, and how to savor it. We also drink wine often; all sorts of wine, from “two buck Chuck” for some fairly pricey brands. Without even being alert to what we’re doing, we’re educating ourselves about wine. I don’t think of myself as a wine connoisseur; my limited sense of smell probably precludes that avocation, but I’d an event that allow me to know very well what I’d gained from my wine tasting experiences.

I opened a jar that had been a house gift, poured a glass, and took a glass as I was preparing dinner. To my surprise, I really could taste the oak of the barrel, cherries, and some pear just as the wine pourers often say. Your wine sang to me. I totally enjoyed it. This is exactly what can occur when you look at abstract paintings once you take some time to become knowledgeable about art. Knowing what adopts a great painting could make that painting sing to you. You will have a way to express, “I am aware something about art, and I am aware why I know very well what I like.” My next article begins exploring the required things that enter making a great abstract painting.

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