Monday, February 29, 2016

White Pears #21

'White Pears #21'
oil on canvas/20" x 16"/February 2016

Completed over the course of pre- and post-lunch painting sessions on Saturday afternoon (nobly foregoing the not inconsiderable temptation to attend the competing attraction of the local Gresford Athletic v Holywell Town football match – congrats to the mighty Colliers on their late winning goal – in order to devote the time to artistic pursuits, as one must, of course), (re)presented here is the latest production off the easel, as previewed last Thursday in its in-progress state. The subject-object pears have been worked up to a loose, textured finish (somewhere between the pre- and post-New Year painting technique) in order to preserve an attempt at a certain ‘freshness’ of facture, although they’re no less considered and actively observed, with minor adjustments made to the horizontal (particularly) and vertical planes upon/against and ‘tactile space’within which they reside.

All this activity was performed to the aural accompaniment of The Caretaker’s albums ‘An Empty Bliss Beyond the World’ and then ‘Patience (After Sebald)’, the former with its genesis in samples from old pre-war dance hall 78rpm records and the latter, which serves as the soundtrack to Grant Gee’s documentary film of the same title, from Shubert’s ‘Winterreiss’, each source then subjected to a process of sonic manipulation and degradation (in part utilizing the surface crackles from original vinyl discs) that allows disembodied fragments of the originals to emerge from and then become consumed again by a dusty haze of electronic white-noise, an ever-fascinating listen, both haunting and bleak and yet warm and human, a wonderful mix of the digital and analogue, and an excellent soundtrack to the old painting practice.



Later, to celebrate the completion of another painting, our favourites Atletico emerged triumphant from the Madrid derby, a fine end to the day indeed.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Work in Progress...


Breaking with tradition here to present an image of a painting in unfinished, in-progress state, with this particular composition involving not a change in direction but at least orientation, and canvas size, to accommodate the ‘two level’ idea proposed and explored in a few photographic studies blogged recently

Monday, February 15, 2016

White Pears #20

‘White Pears #20’
oil on canvas/10″ x 14″/February 2016
Completed earlier today following sessions of substantial progress  on Saturday and Sunday afternoons, (re)presenting the latest painting off the easel, a composition of three of the recently re-modelled whitewashed pears.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Special Saturday (and a Bit of a Wobble)

A browse of the afternoon’s football results is of course an essential activity on a Saturday evening, circumstances permitting, and was yesterday rendered particularly pleasurable as not only the team to whom we are irrevocably yoked, Wrexham, won (2 – 0 at the Racecourse against Bromley in the National League) but, browsing through and down the leagues,  it transpired that all our Northern favourites had too – Stalybridge Celtic 3 – 0 at Boston and Gainsborough Trinity 2 – 0 at Hednesford in the National League North; Blyth Spartans 5 – 0 against Ramsbottom United (with the stupendously-named Wilson Kneeshaw scoring all five goals) and Marine, 2 – 1 against Matlock Town with a brace of added-time goals, for the first time since November, in the Northern Premier League Premier division and, just below in the NPL Division One North, Mossley indeed running riot in a 7 – 2 romp at poor old New Mills (who have but a solitary point to their name from 25 matches this league season) and Northwich Victoria surpassing even that with an 8 – 2 pasting of Droylsden. Happy days and, given this, today the excellent Non-League Paper had to be purchased to celebrate such. Below is evidence of how the publication reports the Mossley and Northwich Victoria goal-fests.

But that’s not nearly all, as this edition of the Non-League Paper also carries a fascinating article detailing the mighty Jah Wobble’s support of non-league football and particularly of his now-local club Stockport County (who unfortunately have of late fallen even further than Wrexham), which, to someone who has ever been a fan of the great man’s work with PiL on the early 'Public Image' and 'Death Disco' singles and first two studio albums, particularly the seminal and still extraordinary ‘Metal Box’, which begins with the deep throbbing rumbling foundation of Wobble's bass guitar and is thereafter driven along by it, makes him even more admirable and groovy.
Of another of the lower league football teams in whom we’ve come to take an interest and have indeed recently featured on this blog, our local heroes Gresford Athletic’s scheduled Huws Gray Alliance match at Mold Alexandra was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

White Pears #19

'White Pears #19'
oil on canvas/10" x 14"/February 2016

Completed this very afternoon, the latest painting off the production line but the first one of the year following our pre- and post-Yuletide/New Year lull. Previously featured in its nascent, underpainted state, this still life composition features as its subject/object matter three of the recently re-made/re-modelled pears, whose finger- and thumb-faceted, handmade surfaces encouraged, via close observation, a revision of the painting technique from the broader approach employed towards the latter part of last year, a slight calming of the rigorousness of the brushstrokes and a more apparently contemplative approach to the painting.
Currently reading Janet Abramowicz’s ‘Giorgio Morandi: The Art of Silence’, with a great deal of relish and interest, certain aspects of this fascinating artist’s practice obviously chime with my own concerns, not least his commitment to seriality and, in the words of James Thrall Soby as quoted in the book, Morandi’s conducting of “persistent research into form and space within a narrow iconographic range”, something I fully intend to continue – these white pears as observed against and upon a white ground obsess me as an artist.