Squeegee

For my painting projects I turned to the works of Richard Diebenkorn and Gerhard Richter. There is an painting of a chair by Diebenkorn that has haunted me for years. How could someone imbue an ordinary object with such emotion? This is just a chair, but it seems so charged with history and longing.

The scope of Gerhard Richter is overwhelmiing. http://www.gerhard-richter.com/ Gerhard RichterGerhard Richter BachFor my project, I simply got out my squeegee and went to work on two paintings, one wet and one dry. My results are not nearly so complex as Richter’s, but they brought the paint into play as a means of accidentally commenting on the paintings at hand.

For the first painting I chose a figure of a woman I had painted in oils on a Masonite board. She was done in soft, neutral tones and I used these same colors in blobs across the Masonite along with an addition of manganese blue. The painting was dry. I did not know how the squeegee would act on the paint so I loosened up the paint with Liquin before running the squeeqee across the board.[caption id="attachment_183" align="alignright" width="610"]seated woman seated woman

seated woman with blobs of paint

seated woman with blobs of paint

I used a large window washing squeegee to pull the paint across the canvas. The result is compelling, giving the woman the appearance of being viewed from behind a screen or window. The distressed paint gives a stronger impression of place than the image did before. I am considering further manipulations to the paint, but am also taken with the accidental placement of the woman amidst the streaks of squeegeed colors.

Anna

Anna

For the second squeegee painting, the wet one, I chose a photograph of two Eames chairs to paint on a small canvas.

Eames chairs

Eames chairs

I wanted to use the rich blue color in the Diebenkorn painting to perhaps convey a similar contemplative mood. the negative spaces around the curvy chairs put them into a conversational relationship. The chairs themselves are of a primary color while the background and floor are nondescript as they would be in a schoolroom setting. After rendering the chairs, I once again got out my squeegee and pulled it across the wet canvas. Not having a heavy settlement of paint upon my canvas caused the distress on the painting to be minimal. It did, however, change the mood from one of straightforward reality to on image slightly removed from common sense. The blurred pigment in the new painting removes the chairs from the schoolroom sending them to a place with an atmospheric quality. Perhaps they want to go to the beach?
Blue chairs, step 2

Blue chairs, step 2

When dry, I plan to send one of the chairs even further away by sanding it out of the picture entirely. By doing this I am hoping to infuse a sense of longing for partnership into the image. Here is a picture of the chairs half sanded.half sanded chair I wanted the erased part to have a pale glow, but it was difficult to get the pigment off of the canvas. The result is a scratchy patch with a ghost image of the second chair. sanded chair I don’t believe that this image conveys any particular idea or emotion. Perhaps a simple charcoal outline of the former chair over the sanded area will bring presence to the canvas.
Conclusion: In critique it was recommended that Ii might continue to play with the squeegee, that the striated lines were interesting, but that I might consider a more limited palette.