|"Peoples of the Earth 1" 21"x 14" collage on paper|
Instructor and master painter Gerald Brommer once told me that some artists believe something is abstracted as soon as the pencil or brush touches the paper. He felt abstraction in art occurs in degrees. In one painting the viewer might recognize what the painting is about, what shapes are representing or suggesting where in another work nothing makes sense. Artists work in varying degrees between what is called "realism" and what is called "non-representational" art.
|"A Winter's Dream 1" |
10" x 14" Acrylic on paper
I had the great privilege of attending a workshop with Glen Bradshaw many years ago. Mr. Bradshaw painted in the more traditional definition of "abstract". He would, for instance, take a seed and break it into it's components arranged artfully on the paper so that one could see the outside, inside, top, bottom of the seed. For a while, Donna Watson had a similar body of work regarding an Asian coin which had a shaped piece cut from the center. This is another definition of "abstract": real but not real, broken, abstracted into it's several components.
|"This Moment In Time" 14" x 21"|
poured acrylic on paper
When the gallery owner left the issue entirely up to me, I decided to submit 3 paintings that are each entirely different degrees of "abstraction" as well as different media. Many of my paintings are "abstract" in that they do not represent anything "real" and yet the paintings will portray "real" shapes. While I love to paint a completely non-representational painting, most of my paintings use recognizable subject matter in symbolic ways. These are, by anyone's definition, "abstract" in that realism has been left behind.