Long, Tall Art

I have always had an attraction to strange, regular shapes.

Regular in that they are simple – squares and rectangles;

Strange in that they don’t exactly fit the Golden Rules of proportions.

Square paintings (like my Water Paintings) and long, tall collages like the ones I’m doing now

are supposedly ‘hard to do’.

Actually, I don’t think they are – although they are hard to view on a computer – the long ones, that is –

because they don’t fit so easily on a horizontal-formatted screen.

For example, here’s a view of one of my new ‘column collages’

Column Collage n unknown dec 2014

Hard to see…
Let’s make it a little bigger…

Column Collage n unknown dec 2014

Well – that’s okay if you want to just look at the piece from top to bottom (or if you get creative with your scroller, bottom to top – but it’s not like you have the opportunity to jump back and forth between the different parts of the collage like you would if you were standing in front of it. If that were the case, you could look at the whole thing – like so –

Column Collage_Sherezade

and then hone in on the parts – top –

Column Collage sherezade top

middle –

Column Collage sherezade  middle

and bottom:

Column Collage sherezade bottom

Or, maybe, you’d prefer – after you’ve noticed ‘hey, there’s a collage over there

Column Collage_Ottomania

to look it over from bottom –

Column Collage Ottomania bottom

to middle –

Column Collage Ottomania middle

to top:

Column Collage Ottomania top

In point of fact, you probably wouldn’t be ‘choosing’ to view the parts one at a time – your eye would fall on different parts of the piece, and you would start unconsciously making connections between the parts based on visual parameters such as color, shape, size and placement and, of course, personal preferences (as in, Dog People prefer pictures of dogs, while Cat People prefer pictures of cats).

This part-to-part thing is kind of interesting to me with regards to these collages, because the details are so small (the whole piece is only about a spread-out-hand’s-width wide – 15 cm – by 70 cm in length), yet you can’t take them in all at once – you need to make the connections, one piece at a time. Even though you get to make the connections any way you like – or, rather, any way your subconscious inclinations would like – the process is Work. If you just stroll by identifying objects hung on a wall (‘Collage, collage, painting, collage’), you won’t get very much out of the experience (except maybe tired feet and peeved friends wondering why you dragged them along). You actually have to expend some effort to make looking at this stuff worth your while. The more effort you make, the greater the reward.

It’s like a conversation: if  you stop listening, the person (or the artwork) on the other side will eventually stop talking.

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