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DAVID CARR-SMITH - IMPROVISATION / DESIGN / ART / KITSCH / CHANCE

ART - GOTHIC into 'RENAISSANCE' into EARLY 20thC    ... in process

TRANSITIONS BETWEEN THREE MODES OF EXPERIENCING 

INDEX
IMPROVISED-ARCH IN AMSTERDAM INDUSTRIAL SQUATS and COLLECTIVES
ALLOTMENT IMPROVISATIONS  - ONE TREE HILL / GUN-SITE 
IMPROVISED VILLAGES - WANDSWORTH / KEW BRIDGE

VERNACULAR and STYLE - BERDUN, HUESCA   
TEMPORARY-ARCHITECTURE - FRANK'S CAFE / SOUTHWARK LIDO 
"HOME" - MY LOCATION VIA MASS-PRODUCTS  
"HOME" - MY LOCATION VIA PERSONAL-CHOICES

ART - GOTHIC INTO RENAISSANCE INTO 20thC
ART - 20thC COLLAGE INTO MASS-MEDIA
 
GRAFFITI INTO STREET-ART 
DESIGN & CHANCE

 

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NEW EXPERIENTIAL INFO FORMS  -  pt1    ... much of this web-page is in process

PART 1:  FROM GOTHIC TO RENAISSANCE
PART 2:  THE CUSP BETWEEN RENAISSANCE & EARLY 20TH CENTURY
 

PART 3:  EARLY 20thC   ... in process  
PART 4:  PAINTINGS AS ABSOLUTE OBJECTS   ... in process  

 

The following account outlines two radical qualitative changes in European experiencing, as mediated via art - from Gothic to Renaissance and from Renaissance to the 20th century. These two perceptually/experientially transformative enterprises appeared contemporaneously with the relative exhausting of the discovery potentials of an existent mass-culture. They both consisted of new noticing, investigating, exposing what, in the hitherto experienced world, had been relatively unnoticed/ignored.

 

The first transition, from Gothic to Renaissance, gave sensational form to an aspect of the world that was minimised in the preceding Gothic culture, whose highest expression in art was concerned with forming images of the 'internal' (psychological) experiences of the 'sacred' and modes of self-existence that aimed at that fulfillment. The first gropings towards what would later be recognised as a 'renaissance' are visible in late Gothic paintings as efforts to assimilate and satisfy the questions: what is this place/space in which I live/exist and experience thoughts about the sacred, and: if the sacred is to be experienced it must surely be also physically actualised - eg: the life of Jesus was performed in a body in the external-spatial world and its meanings were disseminated via external mediation. 

 

This recognition and affirming of the external world stimulated efforts by painters to force their attention plus its correlated mark-making to land not only on the surface of their panel but to 'enter' it, as if exerting the attention of a touch on an object/place which existed (like their own furniture around them in their studio) at a distance and position within it. These attempts to substantiate the outer world in vision and via act opened this new yearning-to-be-discovered region of experiencing, that not only revealed to artists a route to completely new sensations but also yielded new perceptions, understandings, feelings of the existential self (hubris perhaps!), speculations as to the structures of the space we inhabit, the reality of history, philosophies of ideal existence ... external adventures - the material of a different kind of power.

 

Initiated by such artists and artist/mathematicians as Piero della Francesca and Paolo Uccello the Renaissance visual culture flowered and differentiated until, by the 19th century, it began to reach the boundary of its discovery potentials and split into two distinct channels - on one hand it regressed into an academic dictation of functions and methods of art-manufacture, while on the other hand innovative artists made even more objective and 'immediate' recordings of their sensational relations to their external surroundings.

 

 

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PART 1:  FROM GOTHIC TO RENAISSANCE  -  PSYCHIC SPACE TO PHYSICAL SPACE      ... in process

 

The closing of the boundary of the external world and a substitution of a mental 'ideal-physical' for manifestations of the sacred.

The change from Gothic to Renaissance perceiving was a phenomenon whose earlier developments were (in the absence of easy transport and communication links) spatially scattered and temporally unsynchronised. In order to show the inception and progress of this extraordinary perceptual change I have brought together works that exemplify and illustrate its stages (some by artists who actively innovated it, others who simply incorporated aspects that came to their attention) and arranged these in sequences that illustrate aspects of the progress of the phenomenon, rather than attempting to conserve their chronological relations - especially since//after all the wave of change eventually subsumed all local regions and converted all European cultures.

 

SIMONE DEI CROCHEFISSI: DREAM OF THE VIRGIN

about 1365-80 - Bologna  - egg tempera on wood - 56.5 x 42.5 cm -  NG London

 
Everything in a picture is simultaneous, thus when its task is to tell a story, or to reveal the meaningful relations between events separated in time, ......it has a choice - to find a structure that stands in for eternity (necessarily 'mental' since only in that medium do meanings reside), or to use a story-like selection of the salient single events/acts and display them in a physical/temporal sequence. Both types of depiction were used to depict the eternal-sacred - this image exemplifies the first aspect; the second aspect is typified by the predella - a row of separate pictures, each a revelatory event/act from an exemplary life, lived by another in the temporal outer world, all subsumed within and informed by an encompassing eternal/sacred event - depicted as the altar's principal overriding image. 


This work is an example of a type of image and thus experiential structure, that predates the externalisation of awareness that begins to manifest in works of the late Gothic [see examples in this section] and dominates study and depiction in the Renaissance. It organises references to events that are connected in a web of meaning (which has been distilled via a study of sources conveyanced as 'traditional belief') - these are (necessarily) depicted as simultaneous, but in the external world were separated in space and time. 


This practitioner is not a great artist - for instance unlike Di Cione or Giotto, he is insensitive to the emotional affectiveness of visual beauty, let alone Giotto's awareness of the marvel of three-dimensional objects - he almost completely lacks interest in the sensual aspect of external things. However he does (almost) succeed in cramming into a visually-related ensemble, a collection of events which are dislocated in the external world. Indeed, the picture's event-construction is surely very like the fossil of a dream!
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JACOPO DI CIONE (Attributed): NOLI ME TANGERE
about 1370-75 - Florence - egg tempera on wood - 56 x 38.2 cm - pinnacle panel from a Florence alterpiece - NG London 
   ... in process

GIOTTO: ST FRANCIS RECEIVES THE STIGMATA
1295~1300 - Florence - tempera on wood - 313 x 163 cm - Louvre Paris

##

 ... in process

BONO DA FERRARA: ST JEROME IN A LANDSCAPE    ... in process

about 1440 - Siena/Ferrara - egg tempera on wood - 52 x 38 cm - NG London


This picture is like a visual book - a diagram that describes the effort of achieving a sacred//holy life.  It's an instruction plan for aspirants. An 'ad for the church'[1].


T
he space within this frame is divided into a mundane foreground world (in which the saint's body sits and his lion reclines, and an oculus-like opening into a second space in which the saint's head, perched upon its white cape, lives and contemplates (and potentially inhabits). This place beyond the defile between the fringing rocks is where the sacred is expressed by the almost accessible church and the implied promise of freedom and release into the glowing sky. To enter it fully however is still difficult (it still - in the painting - has the character of a dream or inner-vision) - the saint is motionless, only contemplatively within its church. Complete entry into the sacred church is still (in this picture) only potential - he must still pass the orange rocks (that include his contemplative head and halo within their outline!), even beyond these, in sight of his goal, is a church-obstructing[?] wood - the need  to overcome its [?]impedance is signified by the cut stumps of trees [?]. However, much has been accomplished in the anteroom of the sacred world: the huge white rock (continuous in colour with the church - in substance also? - is it the rock from which the church is built?) is (as if) jutting from the saint's back - this rock that holds his books, is cleft by a tree, signifying his effort to grow in spirit in spite of the solidity of the (foreground) world

VER2-ADD: The edge of the saints white cape forms with the edge of the left-hand cliff an 'eye-like' gap into this 'other' space//place, which includes at its rear a sky glowing with the possibility of a golden dawn, a rugged landscape with 3 peaks (## ?) backing the church (whose door is also glowing gold). The church is 'reflected' (via similar forms/colours) in the saint's (holy instruction?) books in a rock niche behind his back - these are (almost) certainly included in the 'sacred' oculus - the doubt signals that they are relevant in both spaces: the (foreground) world's tools to help entry to the church (etc) which chimes their forms - a white note hanging below them [WHAT DOES THIS SAY ??] (almost) continues the cape's lower edge, (almost) completing the 'sacred oculus' to the right frame and including these books within it.


NOTE:
[1]
NB: an analogue: B&H Xmas-card advert !]:

LORENZO MONACO: INCIDENTS IN THE LIFE OF ST BENEDICT (LEFT PANEL)
1407~09 - Florence - egg tempera on wood - 28.4 x 52 cm - predella (left panel) - NG London

Throughout this predella - illustrating significant events in the saint's life - Lorenzo demonstrates and undertakes to extend his ability to visualise and render what seems to him (and his culture) the most essential of his painting's subject-objects: the figures (while leaving their architectural containers merely formulaic). His interest in and visual grasp of groups of figures as single complex solids (their shapes simplified however by robes and determinedly monochromatic) is both sensationally and conceptually powerful. 

Though consisting of only two figures, it appears that the most difficult of these groups to visually conceptualise as a single three-dimensional solid-form was the baptism - further complicated by extending the form of the saint's arm and hand into a small blue jug.

GIOVANNI DI PAOLO: THE BIRTH OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST
1454 - Siena - egg tempera on wood - 30.5 x 36 cm - predella (left panel) - NG London

The emerging desire to make a painting image the external world is here exemplified in just one small case of struggle with the difficulty of exerting control of ones perception and its correlated mark-making. The fire in the grate is the inconspicuous opportunity: an object in the painting of no liturgical meaning-importance and thus open to different modes//means of representation - for instance, it is untrammelled by the tradition of figure depiction, a mode of representation already highly developed because of its central importance in the iconography of religious painting. Indeed, as this case demonstrates, although Giovanni is already quite able to convincingly portray the 3-dimensional complexity of clothed figures, these display nothing of the tension of initiating a completely new and real perception, their competent depiction is nothing like the effort to perceive reality, to use paint to sense the objective solid indupitable present factuality of the object that is the fire: its ash, sticks and flame. 

Because the artist - in respect of this tiny portion of his oeuvre - for some indeterminable reason - was driven to try to do something which had no skilled precedent, for which there existed no established depictive form; driven to exert a determination to actually perceive rather than beautifully paint from inside the canons and skills of his learned craft - he experienced what, since the late 19th C, has been considered the most extraordinary function of art: its application as a means of personal experiencing, its use as a direct means of pushing beyond established boundaries of recognition and knowing into a region of eliciting direct experiences. One sees analogous experiential innovating in the much grander works that initiated the Renaissance: Piero, Masaccio, etal - but does one ever see such a struggle to real-ise spent on a subject-matter of such inconsequentness before the late 19thC !


The consequence of this tiny portion of depictive painting being, as it was made and during the struggle of its making (it's not even fully solved!: note the wood that won't lie-down!), an unprecedented experience of present-moment realising - is that we also see it (after 561 years) still as present experience - we read his actions being made in present moments that we experience as our own. Personal discoveries rendered via work, are always experienced, not only by their maker but also by their spectator, as timeless, or rather as a present in time that is present throughout time, bound not by the date of its origination but only by the attuned attention of a human perceiver. This is the junction of discovery via both Art and Science. 
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GIOVANNI DI PAOLO: ST JOHN THE BAPTIST RETIRING TO THE DESERT  
1454 - Siena - egg tempera on wood - 30.5 x 49 cm - predella panel - NG London

... in process

CARLO CRIVELLI: THE VISION OF THE BLESSED GABRIELE
about 1489 - Venice - egg & oil on wood - 141 x 87 cm - NG London

... in process

perspective painting

GIOVANNI BELLINI: THE AGONY IN THE GARDEN
about 1465 - Venice - egg on wood - 81.3 x 127 cm - NG London

... in process

PIERO DELLA FRANCESCA: PERSPECTIVE DIAGRAM: AN ARCHED VAULT SUPPORTED BY FOUR PILLARS
around 1480 - page from De Prospectiva Pingendi (Perspective for Painting) - Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan.
... in process 

Every increase in human awareness is noticed, investigated, expanded and differentiated (in  this example via a treatise by an innovating mathematician/artist). 

This abstracting/simplifying and precisionising of the shape-structure(s) of the external-visual world (the direction from which most body-affecting events emerge) leveraged means of pragmatic power (eg: visualising territory) and - as its results, rules and methods filtered into the culture of the late 15thC -  enabled even minor, non-innovating, 'craft-artists' to drag their fantasies//mental-visions into an externalised depiction which (in an increasingly extraverted culture) made them persuasively real.

PIERO DELLA FRANCESCA: HEAD ANNOTATED FOR PERSPECTIVE PROJECTION (?) ( DIAGRAM)
before 1482 - page from De Prospectiva Pingendi (Perspective for Painting) - Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan.

... in process

 

CARLO CRIVELLI: THE ANNUNCIATION, WITH SAINT EMIDIUS
1486 - Venice - egg & oil on canvas - 207 x 146.7 cm - NG London

... in process

RAPHAEL

 

MICHANGELO: DAVID
1501~04 - Florence - marble - 5.17m - Galleria dell' Accademia, Florence  

... in process

LEONARDO DA VINCI: THROAT & MUSCLES OF LEG (ANATOMY RECORDING)
c1510-11 - note-book page - pen & ink + wash over black chalk - 29 x 19.6 cm - Royal Collection Trust, Windsor.
... in process

CANALETTO: THE GRAND CANAL WITH S SIMEONE PICCOLO
about 1740 - Venice - oil on canvas - 124.5 x 204.6 cm - NG  London
  ... in process

In some portion of our sense this is the almost perfect rendering of a perceived external place, in another (educated via the 'attention' research of the late 19C (so-called) Impressionism) it seems, though fascinating, as unreal as a model, completely lacking the scale of the actuality in which we exist and are. The dominance of an over-encompassing method of seeing; the completion/perfection of a technique of rendering the appearance of spatial location (called 'perspective'), has finally become a (belief-)system that filters and separates vision from experience, as if a straight-jacket around the exercise and means of perceiving. Such paintings are beautiful and fascinating recordings of a perfected aspect of culture (thus almost defunct in its ability to open the world), which nevertheless, as a whole, still has 2 centuries worth of other resources to exploit//extend - more inward, ideal, romantic, visionary, fantastic, and degenerate - before artists return to sensationally oriented experiencing per se.  
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baroque

academic dissolution

 

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PART 2:  THE CUSP BETWEEN RENAISSANCE & THE 20TH CENTURY  -  RE-APPREHENSION OF VISUAL & SOLIDITY SENSATIONS     ... in process

 

The debasement of Renaissance experiential culture and its final 're-renaissance' in the late 19th century, are precursors of a new experiential paradigm that opened in the early 20th century.

The experiential potentials of means of perception, mediated via Renaissance painting, were almost exhausted by the 19th century. Painting's experiential exploration had devolved into methods of picture-manufacture, and its means of depiction were seperated from its subject-matter. This morgification of painting (institutionalised in the 19th and early 20thC art academies) initiated an exploitation by artists of its last uncorrupted experiential aspect: immediate sensations untrammeled by 'socially significant' subject-matter. Thus the last experiential endeavor of the 'Renaissance' was an investment in as direct as possible sight and apprehension of external physical solidity; it was as if, at the moment of almost complete exhaustion of its potential for discovery, that that culture was returned to its origins: its investigation and experiential substantiation of the visual structure of the external world, but this time stripped of arbitrary subject-matter. The externally sourced sensations themselves were finally - after 4 centuries of applying the potential of 'external-spatial-depiction' for proving//substantiating//actualising (in the apprehension of the viewers of that time) the external reality of socially valued and sacred objects and persons - allowed to be in themselves the objective 'subject-matter'. The external world was de-populated of mentally-crafted and sacred ('from beyond its limits') objects and the world was itself identified as sensation. With the now falsely located subject-matters expunged, the way was cleared for a new physical><mental experiential reality-structure whose sensational forms were initiated via early 20th century artworks by Picasso, Ernst, et al.   ... in process

 

Though sensations of visibility and solidity are separate modes of apprehending the 'external world', we automatically - via an 'internal' mental faculty - construct our apprehension of space and objects from visual cues (perspective scale etc), so that in effect we can 'touch at a distance'. This 'physical' apprehension of distance, position, solidity (without body contact) can be enhanced//focussed in ones//via attention. Certain artists of this 'cusp' period (spanning the end of the 19th and start of the 20th centuries), which corresponded to the exhaustion/degeneration of the discovery-potentials of the 'Renaissance', (an exhaustion expressed in the degenerate codified art-production typical of the art academies : the Ecole des Beaux Art, etc), in effect 'cleansed the Augean stables' by returning attention and working motivation to as direct-as-possible sensation. Both Manet and later Monet submerged themselves in the activity of externalising their vision - Manet grasping at the immediate visual structure of encountered scenes, Monet treating the picture as a sort of projection screen on which to accumulate his visual sensations as immediately as possible. At the other end of the sensation continuum, Cézanne attempted to directly perceive the solidity of external things and space, working on finding forms whose visual relating forces his brain (and the subsequent viewer's) to perceive, in spite of the flatness of the picture, spatial solidity and positional depth. One by one the then encoded aspects of Renaissance art were rejected to allow the purity of the pure 'science' of sight to invest their whole work.   ... in process

CONSTABLE: HADLEIGH CASTLE

c1828-9 - oil on canvas - 122.6 x 167.3cm - Tate Britain, London 

This powerfully magnificent sensation-saturated image is, at its most superficial end, just that - an image. The actual scene, however sensationally presented, and of course sensed thus by the artist, is distilled and filtered into a picture, one whose conviction partly rests in a tradition of evoking emotional effects by the arrangement of confrontations (eg: the empty tower and the distant space of sea / the small man facing a summation of his vast location in the towering clouds). A romantic drama - the 'reality' of whose effects are endorsed and balanced by the actuality of the physical sensations that affirm their forms - sensations culled via many hours spent directly transposing external visual events into corresponding forms and marks of paint. 

How different and cleared of any bludgeoning traditions is the Corot, which simply reports a 'chance' portion of the visual field whose 'meaning' consists only in the automatic catching of the eye's attention by the (almost) central tower.

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COROT: THE ROMAN CAMPAGNA, WITH THE CLAUDIAN AQUEDUCT
prob 1826 - oil on paper on canvas - 22.8 x 34 cm - NG London


A landscape in direct sight - not a 'model' or perspectively informed construct - just a simple report of his direct sensations of standing in this view. His attention is focussed on the mid-distant tower, near his position the ground is perceived but not considered, not in focussed attention.

TURNER: ROUGH SEA

c1840-5 / 91.4 x 121.9cm / oil on canvas / Tate Britain, London


Probably an 'unfinished' picture or (like Constable's) a full-sized 'sketch'. However this could be catagorised as the 'hidden' stage of the emergence of a type of art-mediated experience that would only openly manifest in the 20th C.


The painter apparently seeks to merge in his present awareness the sensational phenomenon and his acts of painting it. The eschewing of a traditional morally/socially significant subject matter (which he almost always, at least smuggles into, his 'finished' paintings); his total immersion in the significance of any immediately realised experience (and the consequent rejection of all academic credos) heralds the future functionality of art.

 

MANET: THE HOUSE AT REUIL
1882 / oil / 92.3 x 71.5 cm / Alte Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen, Berlin


After the solidly constructed subjects of the Renaissance and the artificiality of the academic paintings of the 19th-C, this astonishingly realistic image looks as transient, uncomposed and inconsequential as real (in between intention and goal) experiencing - its main content is a moment of visual attention cut, like a randomly chosen film frame from our approach to a house ... while passing peripherally noticed herbage beside the driveway one focuses on ones goal, its doorway, momentarily hidden behind an undefinitely noticed tree.


Compared with this sensational adventure the Corot [see above] is a very simple visual moment.

DEGAS: PRINCESS PAULINE DE METTERNICH
about 1865 - oil on canvas - 41 x 29 cm - NG Londo
n


A present instant captured - originally by a camera. Now the character of this momentary image and its subject-origin is deliberately introduced into portrait painting, a medium that historically attempts to endorse most solidly the presence and the substance of the sitter now reports the substance of a momentary glance !

 

MANET: CORNER OF A CAFÉ-CONCERT
prob 1878-80 - oil on canvas - 97.1 x 77.5 cm (this started as half of a larger picture of 1878, and was then enlarged to the right) - NG London 
 ... in process

Attention (and its attendant focus) flickers around - mainly in the foreground of this visualised place. This extraordinary picture takes as its 'subject' the ordinary random wandering of our distracted awareness, it has no pretensions to conveying any visually-distilled/unified 'useable meaning'. It's perhaps ironic that in its background and almost completely unregarded, is a presentation of a traditional theatrical spectacle. 

MONET: FLOOD WATERS
1896 - oil on canvas - 71 x 91.5 cm - NG London

... in process

MONET: THE JAPANESE BRIDGE
around 1919~24 - oil on canvas - ## x ## cm - NG London (loan) 
... in process


The whole painting-surface plus external-subject has become a perception of a single massive form.

 

CÉZANNE: THE BATHER 
1885 - oil on canvas - 127 x 96.8 cm -
MOMA, NEW YORK  ... in process


T
his extraordinary (almost completely successful) effort to make tactilely and visibly tangible the presence of a solid object in its corresponding space - more completely than any previous historical picture (including, or rather especially, the most perfect tromp l'oeil) -    To do so in a way that bends the flat surface in the attentive perception of the viewer - to spatially push this and that part of the surface without resorting to (by the late 19thC, illusory) means such as perspective -  is akin to science in its effort to realise and resolve the act of making it happen, for the first time - to join ones mental attention with actions that alter the physical outside.
 

CÉZANNE: BATHERS 
about 1890 - oil on canvas - 60.5 x 82.5 cm -
Musée d'Orsay, Paris 

... in process

 

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PART 3:  THE EARLY 20thC  -  SIMULTANEITY OF PHYSICAL AND MENTAL SPACES     ... in process

 

The Cézanne is hardly different from a Bellini/et al when both are compared to a 1912 Picasso. What is this extraordinary change? It's a way of perceiving, not just seeing, it includes ones mind - it requires active participation in the artist's perceptions as embodied in the art-work, it is no longer enough to be a ravished spectator of a presentation.

 

Just as Piero della Francesca etal worked out the general properties of the 'external' visual world, and tested them in application to specific objects [ref head-dr above], so Picasso and Braque between 1909 and 1914 worked on pictures whose superficial appearance was stupidly and misleadingly named "Cubism". The initial phase of their radical reformation of the structure of our directly experienced world was work that attempted a more complete way of depicting the space and solidity of the visual/physical things that surround us - reaching out, as Cézanne does, to touch and relate together all locations within the picture, but - without losing Cézanne's sense of direct contact with spatial physicality - dispensing (more than he found possible) with other aspects of external appearance, sacrificing subject-matter-recognisibility to a single-minded effort to force the pictured forms to evoke, via the perceived relating of their parts, a brain//perceptual experience of directly//immediately actualised spatial solidity, which included the picture as an area-limited 2D surface, whose actual existence was the support for & visual starting point for every form  all the artists mental excursions into // which every mark of paint defined & which thus was forced to endorse the (at least) mental actuality of the depicted space

  ... in process

Just as Piero della Francesca et al, apparently for the first time, worked out the general properties of the 'external' visual world, and tested them in application to specific painted objects [ref his head-dr above], so Picasso and Braque between 1909 and 1914 worked on pictures whose superficial appearance was stupidly and misleadingly named "Cubism". the initial phase of a radical reformation of the structure of our directly experienced world, via paintings that attempted a more complete way of depicting the space and solidity of the visual/physical things that surround us - reaching out, as Cézanne does, to touch and relate together all locations within the picture, but (without losing Cézanne's sense//sensations of direct contact with spatial physicality) dispensing (more than he found possible) with other aspects of external appearence, sacrificing subject-matter-recognisibility to a single-minded effort to force the pictured//painted forms to evoke, via the relating of their parts, a perceptual experience of actualised spatial solidity, whose (at least) mental actuality was endorsed by the fact that   every mark of paint visibly touched//defined the painting's physically flat and area-limited surface.

-------------------

..that, while every form ican be read as directly on the surface, when seen in relation to another it takes a relative position inside the picture space

 

Just as those painters at the inception of the Renaissance attempt to physically/tactilely reach into the depicted space in their pictures - a space that became (when its shape had become fully defined and thus reduced in direct physical experience !) codified as 'perspective' depth - so these early 20th century artists sought to form a simultaneous presence of the external physical and the internal mental by including the last ((hitherto ignored) aspect of their 'images', their physical existence//reality//actuality//presence.

 

 

PICASSO: LANDSCAPE WITH BRIDGE
1909 - oil on canvas - ## x ## cm - Veletržní Palác, National Gallery, Prague
... in process
An extraordinarily complex mass of multi-related forms which however demands to be seen all at once as a single object. This picture (still - even after 104 years) sets up in ones attention an acute condition of active demand to encompass all its spatial relations simultaneously!

The act and problem of taking a spatially real landscape and - without compromising with (by the late 19C) 'non-experiential' (Renaissance) painting techniques of traditional visual illusionism - compressing it into the form of a painting that is directly sensational, is a motivation of this extraordinary development in art (and a correlative//precursor of its #contextual# culture's increasingly multivalent experiencing). 
----          ... 

PICASSO: WOMAN - HEAD AND SHOULDERS  

1909-1910 - oil on canvas - 73 x 60 cm - Pompidou Centre, Paris

 ... in process

PICASSO: 'TABLAU-OBJET' - STILL-LIFE WITH CHAIR-CANING - (1912) - (MUSEÉ PICASSO)

The structure and functioning of this generative object of the new experiential paradigm is discussed below :

 

The object's 'reality aspects' are manifold:

 

The painted still-life / the printed chair-caned oil-cloth / the rope fixed to the stretcher edge 'outside the picture'. Each 'layer' relegates the layer 'below' it to 'mentality' and the layer 'above' it to 'physicality': 
  
-  The tactile paint marks confer reality on the visual space and mental signs. 
  
-  The printed oil cloth, as real object from outside, proves the paint-space is illusion, but has its realistic chair-caning confirmed as mental sign. 
  
-  The rope, forced between image and outside, fixed to the physical picture, banishes the tromp l'oil chair-caned oil cloth, both its illusion and its substance, to the relative mental plane of the image. 
  
Because there are 3 layers the shock of realising that 'real' is identity of mental and physical is confirmed! 
  
NB:  In the art of the previous cultural period (Renaissance to late 19thC) this relation of illusion and object is (only) potential - vis: 


-  Tromp l'oeil, whose illusions are marvellous in so far as they 'tromp' their physical support.

-  The duality of subject and paint was fully developed in the late 19thC: Courbet, Monet, Cézanne. However not even they achieved the dual-unity of subject and the physical 'painting'.

 

MAX ERNST: "2 CHILDREN THREATENED BY A NIGHTINGALE" - COLLAGE & OIL-PAINT ON WOOD - 18x13in - (1924) - (MOMA, NY) ... in process

 

MARCEL DUCHAMP: "FOUNTAIN" - URINAL - (1917)

 

'Collaged' into an open art exhibition, the resulting experiential form includes: ! urinal in an art show ! - the clash of "R. MUTT" and 'signature' and the complex exchanges between urinal and "Fountain" (sculpture, drinking) exacerbated by the position of the object - the transformed exhibition event, the submission procedures, the sudden visibility of the question "what is art" (: certainly not an exhibit in this exhibition !).  

 

It's a shockingly 'naked' intrusion into the by-then comfortable zone of collage - its 'found-objet' is collaged onto the tableau of the 'outside' world ! It's an 'objet' that is associatively about as opposite from its contemporary Art as is possible - it breaks (the 'mould of') synthetic cubism completely open again (as open as the first 1912 papier-colle must have been). It brings art (at least for art's spectators) to a standstill, it makes a (disgustingly) familiar object unique !
... in process

MAX ERNST: "UNE SEMAINE DE BONTÉ" - BOOK-3 / #17 
(1934 - Paris

[reserve   ... in process

MAX ERNST: "UBU ENCHAINÉ" THEATRE SET
1937 - Production: Sylvain Itkine - Paris

[reserve   ... in process

 

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PART 4 :  PAINTINGS AS 'ABSOLUTE OBJECTS' & ABSOLUTE OBJECTS AS ART ... possible?

 

The reduction of all the marvellous complexity of sensational awareness mediated through the practice and consumption of art, to 

 

A. R. PENCK:  UNTITLED (SYSTEM PAINTING)
1966 - oil on canvas - 109.5 x 95 cm - Michael Werner Gallery

... in process

warhol (elec-chair)

rothko

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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INDEX
IMPROVISED-ARCH IN AMSTERDAM INDUSTRIAL SQUATS and COLLECTIVES

ALLOTMENT IMPROVISATIONS  - ONE TREE HILL / GUN-SITE
IMPROVISED VILLAGES - WANDSWORTH / KEW BRIDGE

VERNACULAR and STYLE - BERDUN, HUESCA   
GRAFFITI
 

TEMPORARY-ARCHITECTURE - FRANK'S CAFE / SOUTHWARK LIDO 
"HOME" - MY LOCATION VIA MASS-PRODUCTS 
"HOME" - MY LOCATION VIA PERSONAL-CHOICES

ART - GOTHIC INTO RENAISSANCE INTO 20thC
ART - 20thC COLLAGE INTO MASS-MEDIA
 
GRAFFITI INTO STREET-ART 
DESIGN & CHANCE


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