June 07, 2006

Abstract How-To

When I delivered the seven little Bokushos to my NOLA gallery, I tried to explain what they were all about and how they came to be. I was asked to write it down so she could be better informed. I couldn't just write a few words, so I made a page which can be printed out on one sheet which explains the small, unlinked images.

Abstract painting is often a mystery to many, and I've learned that some really do want to know more about the process. Usually, I mumble something using a few keywords and add a shrug. It's not an easy genre to explain! In this case I happened to be able to trace it step by step from inspiration, through fumbling around, and finally the realization of a finished product. I don't know if it adds anything to the appreciation of the works, but it's a bit like tracing ones genealogy... it might amount to 'so what?', or an enthusiastic 'is that so?'


Omega said...

So many people seem to be unable to read abstract paintings, and so I think that any kind of straightforward (i.e. un-bullshitty)expanation is positive. For those who love and get a deal from the work without explanation as I do - further information adds to the experience. So win win all round.

KJ said...

One wonders if wordy explanations don't spoil the fun of figuring it out to suit yourself, but how often have we heard "I just don't get it!" Even titles can give a clue or obfuscate further the intent of the abstraction.

Omega said...

I'm all for putting the further information in a place where it doesn't intrude on the view of the piece itself. Some people prefer to work their reactions out with the work alone. And yes, titles can help or hinder - but hey, folks just have to learn to be open and take in the experience - confusing, obfuscatory, or blissfull!