Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Fashionable Simplicity

Further to the resurgence of a simplified aesthetic in the US, I was interested to read this article in the Guardian, last weekend, discussing the women involved with the Bauhaus.http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2009/nov/07/the-women-of-bauhaus
And while looking for texts regarding Mondrian's search for uncomplicated harmony I discovered the news on this blog http://thelowcountriesblog.onserfdeel.be/that there is a Van Doesburg exhibition at Stedelijk Museum De Lakenhal in Leiden. There is so much to approve of and admire in this search for simple harmony, which is much needed in these complicated times and for me more welcome than the other popular escape of the fantastical and gothic which appears currently all pervasive.


Victory Boogie Woogie, 1942-44, Oil and paper on canvas, 50 x 50" (measured on diagonal sides)
courtesy of Wikipedia



The courage, scrutiny and genius of Mondrian will always remain a source of inspiration but surely this, a late work, is not a simple painting. Neither is it cold, vacant or clinical. The touch is visible and vital. Vacant space and hard edge maybe clearing out the clutter but I seek to keep the emotional in my work and very often emotion is complicated, soft and crowded - Rothko, Motherwell. Grayson Perry in his excellent Unpopular Culture presents a simplicity that is not reduced and is emotional, political, visual and personal. As an exhibition it is sentimental but the works are not.

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