Reaching a conclusion, and reading a poem in public

I’ve posted before about the commission that I’ve been working on this year. A piece involving three canvases that together are close to four metres wide. This week finally saw the installation of the work in their new home, the Max Planck Institute for Psycholingistics in Nijmegen.

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You never quite know how artworks are going to look in a new location so it is always just a bit of an edgy moment when you pull them out of the packaging and lean them up against the wall and step back to look. On this occasion the result has proved to be undoubtedly a move in the positive direction. The work itself of course hasn’t changed, but the location it has received is on a beautifully spacious white wall that is positively flooded with light. I could have asked for little more, the three panels do look, even if I say so myself, beautiful.

The paintings were given an official  presentation moment on Wednesday afternoon, along with the also recently purchased work by Alex Dima. It was a chance to thank those involved, but also a moment to say something about the ideas and intentions behind the paintings. I am always a bit wary to say too much in such circumstances, I don’t want to give the idea that there is just one route to go. However I am also keen, if I can, to offer the viewer a way into interpreting the work. On this occasion I chose for a short poem, it touches on a number of ideas and reference points that have been important whilst creating the work, but does so in a way that hopefully opens doors to interpretation rather than closing them.

I do not pretend to be a writer or a poet, but I have to admit to being quite satisfied with the resulting three verses, it was certainly well received at the opening!

 

Flight and escape, contemporary themes

Uncertain destinations, safety behind barriers

I look to the landscape

The backdrop of our lives

A rush of wings

Movement passing

 

A narrow aperture opening

Reduced geometric architecture

Refined beauty in our man made line

Engaging the serene beauty beyond

Crisp, hard edges marking space

Illusions in the décor

 

Nature meets the line

Clear blue sky and searing heat

A solitary cloud drifts

A rush of wings move the air

Lost in the colour

Swift movement passing by

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2 thoughts on “Reaching a conclusion, and reading a poem in public

  1. I really like the interplay of convex and concave forms in these. The natural pattern of flying birds works both inside each painting and between them. The poetic description is also in place. I lost my public speech virginity a couple of years ago ( teaching or commenting is not public speech in my book) an I have to say that I could do without.

    • Hi Pasi. I think anyone who works in education ought to be able to stand up and talk when its needed, and generally I don’t find it a problem. But part of me thinks that the paintings should kind of look after themselves…..that is kind of the point of making them. But I suppose the poem was just a way of pushing the viewers a little bit in the right direction (and avoiding me babbling on for way too long!)
      Thanks for the compliments about the work, at the moment I’m working on paintings and drawings that involve transplating trees from where I live in the Netherlands into landscapes from the far north of Scotland. Keep watching the blog, some images will appear soon enough I think!

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