Wednesday, 20 October 2010
Reclaiming My Work
Turnbull Winter (work in progress)
Have you ever gone down a road and realised after a while that you should have turned left some way back, but continued on in the mistaken belief that you might find a way to your destination? Me too. I did it with this painting. I've been unhappy with it for some time, probably shortly after it got started.
As time went on, I realised that it was someone else's painting; I was trying to make it work by making it look like paintings by some other artist. As a result it didn't look like mine and I didn't know how to finish it. It had become misty, undefined, and the one thing I think you can say about my usual work is that it's well-defined - chunky, someone once called it. I also didn't like the fact that it was painted with a different palette from the other paintings I'm preparing for the Xmas show.
A few days ago, I came to the conclusion that I was going to have to take a radical swipe at it and make it my own again. I did that today and while it still has, to me, an unusual look about it, it feels like my unusual look. There are elements in it of paintings I did years ago and elements of what I've been doing more recently. In that sense, it may prove to be an important piece of work for me. Even if not, I feel that, with a bit more effort, after the paint dries, it'll sit far more comfortably in my oeuvre, as we say in Gateshead.