tondo is a Renaissance term for a circular work of art. The word derives from the Italian rotondo, "round." I mentioned my Tondos in an early blog post but never got around to filling out the details. Now is a good time as they are on my mind again.
Dennis Hollingsworth's blog entry today mentions the importance of paying attention to what's happening 'beyond the painting' because you might pick up on something a lot more interesting than what's actually happening ON the painting. His trademark style developed from such accidental observations. I didn't develop a trademark style, but at least a pretty unique series from such an observation.
My palettes are 6" plastic coleslaw tub tops. I always have several with different acrylic color mixtures in use at a time. When they dry and have built up a degree of thickness from several uses , I would find myself absentmindedly peeling the paint off the plastic... usually coming off in one complete circle if the layers are thick enough. The reverse side often revealing a refined abstract of great interest and beauty, smooth, glossy and complete... nothing at all like the dull topside. I began saving them and then started playing around with various arrangements. The top image shows the simple tondo framed within square mats. I kept these and scatter-arranged them around the corner of our bed.
The challenge has been to incorporate them into real paintings and take them to another level, not just place the circle on another painted surface. I must have interaction between my layers... just gluing something down doesn't satisfy. It's not been easy to make this work but some have been very promising.
To be continued...