Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Danzig, 2014 (Mixed media on canvas, 76cmx120cm)

On Nothing

Nothing is impossible to paint, or to phrase it differently; It's impossible to paint 'Nothing'. When someone applies paint on a surface, there will be marks. Marks come from decisions. If you grab that brush, or other tool for applying paint, and put paint on the surface you've already taken decisions. A decision is something, as is indeed the physical evidence of said decision. One of the fundamental strengths of the format of panting is its predictable formula. Not unlike a theatre stage where actors appear in front of an audience, paint appear on the canvas to 'perform' in front of the viewer. This rather rigid, basic set-up informs the many different styles, subject matters and innumerable other variations we find in painting. Hurrying to add narrative or metaphor onto the surface is traditionally the most travelled path, but contents doesn't always need to be imparted to the work in this way. The painted surface has an inborn resilience, due to its traditional format, that suffices in itself. 'Nothing' needs not to be feared as a painting always contains more than enough of 'Something' by simply being a painting.

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