Monday, 13 June 2011

Landscape; A Picture of Nothing

Landscape. Isn’t it all just nothing?

Although I’m moving away from focusing my work on Landscape, I still have a very emotive connection to it. But isn’t it all about nothing? The absence of anything?
I realised that my outcome was disappointing because it really was a picture of nothing. The space had depth but lacked any sort of atmosphere and the foreground objects seemed to create a boarder for an otherwise flat plane; too disjointed.

(Chichester Canal – JMW Turner)

Here is a great example, physically the focus point it in an area of comparative nothing, although there is the ship the main image is just open water. The surroundings have more in the name of ‘features’, but through clever techniques  make them dissolve out of view at first. However despite the lack of a physical object to ground the competition, it appears that there’s something completely different hold it all together.
For some reason It seems to be a lack of constraints, the colours fade into the background creating an almost eternal spectrum. In short it makes me feel free and alive.

I could quite happily spend a warm evening outside staring at the stars, and I do. Because there’s something highly therapeutic about these gripping atmospheres. It is transporting you to that place, in essence its very escapist.

Space is a very powerful force. I remember a member of my art history class had designed a piece of modernist architecture, and there was a space on the second story that resembled a balcony. When my lecturer asked the student what the space was for the student said that evidently he would use it to place a BBQ and reclining chair to relax in the evenings. When my lecturer then followed up his question with why is that your instinct with this space the student could not really answer but could provide the practical reasons associated like, being outside. However our understanding of space seems to be something very emotive. When you walk into a high ceilinged building there is usually some sense of a presence. It is possibly why this format of space has been adopted by religious institutions, to command a feeling of heavy air or awe. The same thing for me happens in this painting the space makes me feel in a certain way that a more claustrophobic environment would not. I believe this abstracted emotive connection is partly why I have been drawn to landscape. But I’m not going to make any general claims for the entire reason, I think that’s a little bit more complex for a blog post, mid revision anyway ;) 

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