I have read a lot about Cézanne’s methods of painting. His painting influenced much of the modern art that followed in the early part of the 20th century. However, several factors lead me to realize that, at this point, I should expand my scope to consider artists with different approaches. First of all, Cézanne used oil paint as his medium. Most of the descriptions of his technique centers on brushwork in relation to form, and the creation of spatial planes in his work. This is difficult to study without access to original work. Secondly, my own efforts in painting at the moment are limited to watercolor, to which the discussion of brush technique in oils doesn’t really apply, as far as I can tell. I wanted to study other artists’ processes.

Joan Miró

I just started to read more about Joan Miró, the Spanish artist and painter, whose work I admire. I am sure there are hidden messages in his work, as if the symbols and icons in his work are some kind of Rosetta Stone. One of the paintings that exemplifies this is, The Beautiful Bird Revealing the Unknown to a Pair of Lovers, the cover illustration to the catalog to “Joan Miró”, the retrospective exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art, 1993-1994.

In previous posts, I have wondered about what processes artists use to express what they wish to express. The opening essay, entitled Peinture-Poésie, Its Logic and Logistics, by Carolyn Lanchner, offered this teaser: “Like creation itself, the artist’s [Miró’s ?] inner creative process is ultimately unknowable; nonetheless, an investigation into its working mechanics, as developed by Miró, should bring us closer to understanding not only the logistics but the generative logic of the oeuvre.” I can hardly wait to plow through the rest of the article to find discover Miró’s driving force.

Further along in the essay, is the statement: “Miró always vehemently maintained that his art was never abstract.” Does this reinforce the idea that his paintings are messages to be decoded? The term ‘Peinture-Poésie’, meaning paint-poetry implies the presence of a message, but a beautiful, rhythmic meaning to Miró’s work.

Work in progress for today

I continued working on the idea I presented in yesterday’s sketch: synesthesia. I had the notion to expand upon the idea of crossed senses (i.e., seeing music, tasting shapes, etc.) and tried to present a schematic sketch. I wouldn’t classify the sketch below as abstract, as I want it to represent a simple, very specific idea. I also hope that, in its final form, it won’t be too cartoonish or dopey.

Experimental Sketch, December 20, 2013: Synesthesia Series

Perhaps as I read through more of the Miró retrospective catalog, I will get some more hints about his method, which could help me expand my own way of representing ideas.


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