The next Picasso or Braque will not invent cubism. The next Peter Blake or Andy Warhol will not invent pop art. And the next Jackson Pollock or Willem de Kooning will not create the Abstract Expressionist movement. If you are copying these guys, you aren’t learning from them. I realise that of the many successful artists following their path, Charline Von Heyl, has figured out the real definition of success on the canvas. Von Heyl understands how highly successful artists through the decades have been volleying the ball between themselves. In order to create a meaningful and significant occurrence on the surface of the fabric, like they all did, in… Read More »How Charline Von Heyl inspires me
What unmistakably stands out for many painters are the long silences they have standing in front of an artwork. Often time almost stands still in both the studio and gallery. To an outsider, this may appear to be an unproductive period, as they digest what is in front of them. However, for me, this time is extremely valuable. l find that as l digest what is in front of me my imagination is inspired, triggering thoughts that often leads new works. So here I am at Mori Corvi show to see Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s latest show, ”A Mind For Moonlight’. Lynette, the London based Ghanaian artist, was 26 when she graduated… Read More »Something essential, a review of Lynette Yiadom-Boakye exhibition
When I hear a negative voice in my head saying, “I am in over my head, they are going to find out,” this little voice reminds me I am not good enough. It seeks to devalue my self worth causing me to underestimate myself. Then I come to the conclusion that l must be mad about choosing to be an artist. I realise that l have volunteered myself for all this self-doubt. I feel like l am pretending to be an artist. If l am not careful the voice gets out of control and my self-confidence is eroded. It is hard to break the psychological patterning in which I fear… Read More »Pretending to be a painter
The once traditional approach of cracking the art market by working the gallery and exhibition circuits, and applying for bigger and bigger opportunities, is no longer the only route to notoriety. The book, ‘Making it in the art world: New approaches to Galleries, Shows and Raising Money by Brainard Carey’, was written to give artists insight to finding their own way into the art world. Carey incites artists to raise their own money; build up networks; and bypass the gallery system in order to light a fire under their own career. I had the assumption, before reading the book, that it would tell me the same old things I… Read More »Making it in the Art World – A book review
To someone who loves art, walking into a gallery and seeing stimulating art is inspiring and uplifting. However, at times, it can be intimidating when you’re trying to emulate success for yourself. When Chuck Close started his career, like a lot of artists he was affected by the best art of the time. De Kooning became a massive influence on Close’s earlier work. De Kooning stirred Close into practising his style and technique. It all started so well. After several years, Close had De Kooning’s style and technique down to a tee. However, Close struggled when he realised that when people stood in front of his work, they thought of… Read More »What I learnt about process from Chuck Close
It wasn’t that long ago that there was a common belief that humans were separate from the natural world. If people wanted to experience the fundamental characterises of the sublime the only option was to journey to the countryside to observe nature and the natural world. In his new show at the Tate Modern in London, the artist Olafur Eliasson attempts to bring the sublime to the city. When l visited this art exhibition l saw the physical response to the wonders of nature. Eliasson highlights that not only are we part of the environment, that Art, can directly acknowledge and portray a wake-up call that draws attention to the… Read More »Through an Olafur Eliasson moment can art change the world?
I dream of sitting in my dusty studio. I can smell the pungent scent of turpentine. I can see the photographs and sketches stuck on the wall. Devils Haircut, by Beck, plays in the background and newspapers, magazines and books litter the paint-covered floor. I have a primed blank canvas on the easel, all ready to go. I sit, staring and reflecting on what to do next. I wonder shall I draw or paint today? I wish there was nowhere else l have to be. I often only wish it was true; that I had nowhere else to be. The idea of being unbound by time feels like the ultimate emancipation.… Read More »Is time the artist’s greatest enemy?
Have you ever wondered about the best way to approach art-making? In Art and Fear, Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Art Making, by David Bayles and Ted Orland the artists and authors take on the challenge of verbalising the disquiet and unease of making art. It is somewhat comforting to read an artist talking about typical problems and how to overcome them. One of the memorable anecdotes from the book comes from a ceramics class. The ceramics class is put into two groups and are told they are going to be graded differently. One group is informed to produce as much work as possible, while the other group has… Read More »Art and Fear book review
In my previous blog post, I mentioned Michael Craig-Martin’s interest as a child in the shape and form of American cars. From a very young age, Michael Craig-Martin had the ability to identify every make and model of an American car. I found this profound because as a child I also had this ability, but with British cars in the 80s and 90s. This foundational understanding and appreciation of form is clearly something that many artists unconsciously encounter from a young age. This week l stumbled on a black and white BBC documentary about Henry Moore (1898 – 1986) and my appreciation of form was enhanced. In the documentary, Henry Moore discusses what… Read More »My thoughts on Henry Moore’s appreciation of form
It is hard to understand the incongruities between a successful artist and the work of mere mortals like the rest of us. I want to put into words how can a simple drawing of an object can be turned into a world-class sculptural form. Michael Craig-Martin, the once significant tutor of the YBAs at Goldsmith between 1974-1998, is now showing his latest sculpture at the Gagosian Gallery on Britannia Street in London. Is it the snap at the moment of impact when seeing his work, where he is best in the game? Is it the skill of his placement that no one else comes close to? Or is it the… Read More »Michael Craig-Martin; Sculpture review