My work in july
This month I finished some collages that have been around for months and I didn't know exactly how to finish them.
This first one is actually a remake of a piece I once considered done. At some point, it looked, to me, that the little monster with two wings at the centre was just too detached from the background. It was a bunch of old architecture drawing glued together without much variation in texture or depth. I decided to destroy it.
As one can see above, I folded the collage horizontally and found what would be the structure for this new work. Instead of a horizontal figure at the centre I got to a more condensed dark shape, but still keeping the two wings from the original composition.
Many new materials came in and transparencies became a very important part of this work. Below many layers it was important that the originals wings could be seen.
The video below shows how I used dried glue to create translucent layers.
I also used this glue technique in the Abstract Composition in order to make clear the difference between the two halves of the painting. The one above rough and matte, the below smooth and translucid. This one stands out from the other collages by its relative simplicity and it's still not clear what happened in my head during its make.
First of all, there is this below and an above feeling that would suggest polarities like good/bad, surface/depth, worldly/spiritual or earth/sky. No wonder this duality had always existed in art, probably had its peak in baroque religious painting and made it to Rothko's.
At the bottom there is also those strings emerging to reach the solid black. I see it as something/somebody weak but focused on getting to a place where it can finally blossom. Or it can be something less poetic like some underground infrastructure coming to the surface. This collage actually started from something much bigger and complex, I was considering using many more materials and colours. It was the opposite of what usually happens: avoiding minimalism, I always like to mess up a bit with things adding some confusion and fragmentation. However, in this one, suddenly, things started to get boiled down and ended up following this basic and impersonal composition. Is this good or bad?
The third work I completed this month was Reaching fingers.
It started with a collage I had never really liked it. Thinking about it I decided to build something new from it. I kept the print of the hand as the main theme of the work and use it as figurative elements that humanizes the abstract shapes around it.
On the other side of the studio, there was an unfolded shoe box glued on a sheet of cardboard. Boxes, when unfolded, had once in a while called my attention by its symmetry, and its sense of structure.
Its natural configuration, four flaps unfolding from a central rectangle, suggested, to me, a radial composition that could give me some hints on how to keep going with this. Something pushed me to extend the surface of work and add some abstract surroundings. The picture of the hand stepped in, and plays as a sort of trigger of the connection between the centre where it lays and the margins made from abstract collages.
Things get hard to explain from here and it was already hard to pin point the important ideas that drove me along the way. This work follows the same pattern of many other past experiments: once the main concepts are settled down, I open up my self to a less rational process where things get mixed up, confused and sometimes contradictory to the ideas I just engaged my self in.
Why there is one finger missing? Why triangles? Why there is an upside down portrait? In many answers I can think of, no one stood out as the definitive one.