Painting and Necessity

untitled - unfinished

“if one begins to cherish, and like what one’s done, one’s actually on a very slippery slope indeed…” ~Frank Auerbach

It is not certainty that compels me to rework a painting.

unfinished painting

unfinished – untitled – painting

This painting has been handled in surges. I have tried working faster, laying on less and less paint, but the more I attempt to pre-determine outcomes the less connected I feel to the end result. Absurd and outmoded though my approaches seem to me at times, ultimately I rely on instinct and the process either feels genuine or it’s abandoned; its subject, its properties and its execution follow no recipe.

unfinished - untitled - painting

unfinished – untitled – painting

So I paint the way I need to, not the way I’d like to.


ps. Currently working my way through T. Godfrey’s Painting Today, Phaidon Press 2009, and highly recommend it.


3 thoughts on “Painting and Necessity

  1. So funny, I was talking to Mikey about this exact same thing last night. We were musing over people who have workshops showing how they go about their work and that I would be terrified to do that because I have no idea of what the process really is, it just either makes its way through me or it doesn’t. I can never really tell beforehand. What fun would it be anyway, if you already knew what was at the end of the pieces journey? And I think most of us with our fragile artist egos would empathize with the creative anxieties and doubting our abilities.

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