Some time ago I was contacted and asked whether I could write a poem If— by Rudyard Kipling. I read the poem several times and realized that to write such amount of text and especially poetry is quite a challenging task and I would like to endeavour.
After discussions with client at least two features became visible: first of all, it should be a formal quality artwork, readability is a must and secondly, the composition should have vertical orientation as the only available place on the wall to hang this work was narrow.
With these constraints as a starting point I began my research. The more I read about the history behind this poem and about Kipling himself, the more restrained, simple and minimalistic image arose in my mind. Eventually, I decided to create something really ascetic focusing mostly on the rhythm and energy of the strokes.
The poem was translated into Russian by Mikhail Lozinsky. There are many other translations, but indeed this one regarded as classical.
Broad nibs and gouache on paper, 76 x 40 cm.
The x-height is about 5-6 mm.