06 October 2020

Monet forever, the octopus diary, and Dr Frankenstein's malaise.

On my travels I have seen a lot of Abstract Painting in my day. But now it mostly comes to me online which is practical.

And yet, I rarely see much Light in it, even more rarely do I see much form or graphic unity in it. I know I am entering into the awful world of generalisations but as they say these days, it is what it is. 

I recently came across these photos I took from my last trip to the Musee Marmottan in Paris. They are selected 'crops' which I wanted to isolate in order to reveal this abstract unity which is ever present in so much of Monet's painting. 

In real life for a painter it can be very difficult to crop off bits from a picture in the studio while thinking that it can be preserved (kept alive). Too often, one can tell that they are simply 'crops' or 'cut outs' Lots of artists have done it in the 20th century, very successful ones and otherwise. I have done it too when I couldn't bear to trash a picture nor had I courage repair it. So I would cut them up. But then, I was never left satisfied because I realised that I was just left with the amputated bits. None of the bits looked as good as I had imagined they would when separated from the mother ship, so to speak. Cutting off the Octopus legs only kills them. But in these images of Monet's, they live on! Like the Octopus that regenerates new appendages these cut-outs are all still living images.

Such is the magnificence of this magnificent creature and Monet too! It's kind of like what Dr Frankenstein attempts do but in reverse, it seems.

This brings me to Claude Monet whose talents indeed came from the gods. And by that good fortune he had the gift of creating whole parts out of whole paintings. Go figure! There are few mighty painters but Claude Monet was certainly one of them.

For me, each of these selections or 'cut outs' are 'finished', 'complete in themselves', still very much alive off into the world on their own. It seems to me that the search for unity in a square or rectangular painting is for me, (and many 'Abstract' painters), the Holy Grail of Painting. If one can understand this, using both light via drawing, one could become at least a decent painter, maybe more.


No comments:

Post a Comment