An exercise in perception (1970)
AuthorsClairmont, Philip Ashow all
The Subject chosen for this thesis is the interior of a room and its myriad aspects. When experienced subjectively it can appear as an outer protection or barrier for inner turmoil, providing security, shelter and privacy, or the direct opposite, four walls unnaturally imprisoning that which should be free. Objectively it provides a startling array of forms shapes and textures, both functional and nonfunctional, rigid and organic. The visual tensions influence and condition the actions and thoughts of the human figure within this environment. A room contains within its four walls residue of human thoughts, actions and emotions, a visual catalyst of memories and associations ; past and present. A room is in a constant state of evolution expressing itself in movements from light and dark - a place where time and space can be measurable. I have tried using a variety of means: signs and symbols, dots, dashes, line and tone to capture at once the stationary together with the transitory nature of observed appearances. I have dwelt on and emphasised those ambiguities which have arisen out of the process of creating an image and may reveal something of another reality.... of those submerged realities behind appearances and beyond normal consciousness. The language of an artist is able to cast a glimmer of light on those essential truths.....truths which normally elude civilised man. This thesis provides for sensory and visual appreciation rather than intellectual gratification (thus the emphasis on visual rather than written work). It comprises of a series of drawings, covering some aspects of one particular interior .... in this instance, my livingroom - an immediate environment. The drawings are essentially a visual record of sensory thinking, emotional and free-form imaginative interpretation of commonplace objects. The drawings follow a sequence, both chronologically and in thought development towards painting in which the experience gained of the room, crystallises in paint, size and colour adding dimension. The drawings should perform a dual role, one of providing a direct link with unconscious creative processes, and one of showing a developing awareness of the vital forces and movements that motivate a painting and validate the act of creating it. A variety of techniques have been used, each in its turn revealing some significant facet of the interior. Mixed media drawings predominate, for this media with its own unique properties, is capable of providing a bridge ..... an interlocking of concept and technique where image and media are inseparable.