Artist Philip Hartigan talks about art, interviews other artists, and more
Subscribe to this blog
Follow by Email
Search This Blog
On accidental art
Above is a late painting by Willem de Kooning. Setting aside the debate about whether, because of his advancing Alzheimer's, he really knew what he was making, the big looping linearity of his late style is unmistakable.
Now look at what I saw in the car park of a shopping mall just off I-90 in north-western New York State, where Patty and I stopped for some grub on our drive back from Maine:
Over time they had made so many repairs to the cracks in the tarmac that they accidentally created an homage to Willem de Kooning. Judging by the way people were looking at me, and nearly driving over me, as I knelt on the blistering surface and took photographs of the 'pavement' they were driving on, these observations hadn't really occurred to anyone else on their way to pick up fast food or to buy sweatshop jeans. Subscribe to Praeterita in a reader
Artist Mary Ellen Croteau is showing these columns made from recycled plastic cartons and lids in the window of the Columbia College bookstore on Michigan Avenue. They are a playful homage to Brancusi's "Endless Columns", with a serious environmental message for our times:
Mary Ellen also runs a wonderful experimental art gallery in a window space in west Chicago, called Art on Armitage. I will be exhibiting a mixed media piece there during August 2012.
Linoleum as a material for printmaking has been used for nearly a hundred years now. Normally, you cut an image out using special gouges similar to woodcut tools, cutting away the lino around the image you want to print. This is called relief printmaking, because if you look at the block from the side, the material that remains stands up in relief from the backing material. You then roll ink with a brayer over the surface of the block, place paper over it, and either print by hand or run it through a press. You can do complex things this way (for example, reduction linocuts), but the beauty of the process is that it is quick, simple, and direct.
A few years ago, I saw some prints that were classified as coming from etched linoleum blocks, and I loved the textures I saw in them. In the last few months, I've been trying to use this technique in my own studio, learning about it as one does these days from websites and YouTube videos. I've also had email exchanges with several pr…