Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Rorschach, Davenport and Chance.

Ian Davenport is an English born artist, who in 1990 after being included in Damien Hirst's Freeze exhibition, began creating works usually on a large scale allowing gravity to control the spread and movement of the paint.

"His large-scale wall paintings are made using a syringe to pour paint, in vertical stripes, from the top edge to the floor. The painting process is formal and repetitive, like a scientific experiment, but the final image contains irregularities, where the paint is diverted by the wall surface, and surprises, where particular colour combinations create unexpected visual results"

Quote from Wikipedia.

I really like the fact that Davenport creates work with the use of gravity, almost allowing the world around him to participate in the work he is creating. I remember on Monday in the talk with Michael Howard that he said about chance and luck being the secret laws of the universe - i really like that. Rather than mechanically applying a medium with your hands, paint brush pallet knife, what ever, how about letting gravity, chance, luck, randomisation take control over the painting - let fate so it be decide the outcome of the way the work should look.

Ancient Greek Philosophy had 2 concepts of chance.

  • Tyche - or luck - operates in the mind.
  • Automaton - or chance - operates in the realm of nature.
To many early Greek Philosophers chance did not exist and the world was completely deterministic (events are determined by a chain of unbroken prior events). However, to Aristotle Tyche and Automaton where everyday occurrences, and that chance events were the effect of 2 casual events.
So if to create work using chance then i must concur 2 casual events right? I think i need to look into this more later on.

The Rorschach test, or Ink Blot test was devised in 1921 by Hermann Rorschach to examine subjects personality and emotional functioning. I remember as a child in school creating ink blot style paintings by simply applying paint or ink to paper, card what have you and then simply folding it in half creating wonderful symmetrical patterns. I think this could be a great way of creating patterns that are open to analysis as they were not created by hand so to speak - created more by the acts of folding paper and letting the ink or paint spread and disperse as it may.

More of this to come.

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