(Residency) Fine Arts Diploma: Experimental Drawing & Painting

I suppose with this opportunity to re visit fine art practice what is of interest to me more than anything is the possibility of generating and deepening my understanding of two-dimensional works in paint, drawing and printing. I also see this as a chance to explore works that are of a more personal nature. While cinema, photography and the digital arts are undeniably the significant part of my professional practice they tend to take form in a contempory art context centered around unearthing the irrational nature of the political and economic environment that drives us to endless excess.

This was fundamental in my approach to the Out Of The Blue exhibition in 2007. I did not see that we should simply regenerate the spectacle that is Yves Klein – his works still today and the museums do that in themselves, but rather invert that context in which we access his legacy – as history – with the sensibilities of his own practice if the task was to revisit his works with contemporary examples. Inherent in my practice is a declaration of play, an activity I insist, is common to all universal forms of communication and the practice of art is its logical and natural expression. My online project, “Manifesto: The Art of Play.” Was successful in generating its own unique and spontaneous following when I began documenting knitted rainbow colours yarn-bombed trees across parts of the Australian outback, along with other “spontaneous sculptures” I was constructing. Through some unconscious connection, what I was documenting became associated with the rainbow flag of gay pride and within a short time that aspect of the project took on a life of its own when I began receiving examples of others works from different parts of the world, as they began documenting their own yarn bombed trees, and then as others again, began exploring their own innovation on the theme with “knit” covered cars, buses and any other objects in public spaces where a rainbow patchwork of knitted yarn could be attached.

For the purposes of this residency, my point of departure is to start with the philosopher Henri Bergsion and his Theory of Time, or its synthesis into artistic practice as continuous flux – the perception of duration. Greatly influential on creative practice at the end of the 19th century his ideas of a ceaseless flux leads towards the improvisatory and the consciously incomplete, where the imagination supplies the emotional depth to what is a play of surface forms and the audience, through imagination, perception and memory participate in the creative act. A sensibility I also carry over from cinema, in an attempt to satisfy a fundamental problem I have with narrative forms that remove the experience of discovery. In sorting this out here, there appears basically two ways to look at the world – from within or from without, subjectivity or objectivity, through emotion or through reason. Although the two are interconnected – as suggested by the Abstract Expressionists – the inner world of emotion must be grouped under expressionism; and those that deal with the logical and analytical, abstractionism. Thus far I have attempted and will continue to execute works that follow these divergent but intrinsically connected strategisims, with the view to deepen my understanding of how I may see, interpret and engage the world about me, as opposed to merely attempting an imitation of it, with these mediums. My success I will judge not on my drafting abilities alone, although I do look forward to grappling with your insights in that, but on the inherent qualities of those internal and external states that emerge from my play with paint, ink, pencil and paper.

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