BODY LINES

A classical study of the flow and composition of the human form drawn from life.


Body Lines Jan 24th - Feb 26th 2011
CORKE GALLERY, 296-298 Aigburth Rd. Liverpool

Figurative art may be rather ubiquitous but it is intertwined in human psychology and therefore is an essential expression of art. Working from life is still the best way to create using the human form, sometimes I will take pictures to work on later. Without the model the positions and shapes I want to achieve are not always easy to imagine. With this collection, I began with a vision of the art nouveau decorative arabesques, sensuous and organic and introduced expressionist aesthetics, more indifferent to colours as realistic representation; they have an autonomous, expressive life of their own.
Initially, the nude models are seen as a motif, the erotic impact is less direct. The polarity between skin tones and the bed clothes or drapes are just as easily read as abstract, the colour zones can be seen independent of their function and colour becomes the content and subject. Figures and ornament relate through the contrast of the naturalistic and the stylised, creating sophisticated interplay between the revealed and the concealed. Some classical elements remain and it is this balance of ornamental abstraction and realistic rendering which creates equilibrium between the nude as a woman and as a creature of ornament and expresses the complicated and delicate relationship between our understanding of nature and art.
By eliminating any special definition, the figures are less individualised, yet suppressing the individuality, or any representational portrait account of any models features heightens the presence of the body itself. Rather than use the physical aspects of the female body to manipulate the paths of vision, I wanted the composition to remain harmonious with a natural line. The line is very important to these paintings; its melody exists as a means of establishing a harmony which underpins the work, at the same time, it robs the bodies of any tension and allows them to exist freely in their surroundings.
The women are presented in front of an unassuming background that spreads and frames the women’s figures. The body encased like a cocoon, retains a certain passive grace, they give in to the natural flow of the surroundings, this transforms the figures into objects, some how re-claimed by nature. The spatial location of the forms is not strictly defined. I feel as I am seeing a fragment of an unreal dream world, the purple contours and abstract planes symbolic of the natural, the painting a motif of the fertile youthful life force of a sexually active woman. A symbolism which holds a power today as it did in the figurative art of our past.

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Art as representational aesthetics. The forms of nature and the language of humankind.


 


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