This is from another series of four I planned by splashing, flicking and dropping slightly diluted acrylic paints in various colours from on top of a step-ladder to studio floor level where sheets of 70 X 50 cms (trimmed from 77 x 56 cms “Arches Platine” at $10+ a pop!) were lying in wait six feet below my working arm holding paint-charged ‘squirter’ tubes.
I have several near-empty 200ml tubes of acrylic paints which are squeezed and twisted hard to extract the last drops of pigment… but then, instead of throwing the empties away, I squeeze some air out and use the tube’s reforming suction to introduce a little water into their interiors, followed by a good shake to salvage any remaining – although thinned – surprisingly strong colours.
The overall image of these drops of paint look quite casual in execution – after all, “action painting” was shown in the 1950s to be simply a matter of dribbling, dropping and splashing paint at random onto large canvasses by the late and now famous, if not equally notorious, American artist Jackson Pollock who, currently, holds the world record price for a piece of art at $148,000,000 for one of his canvasses bought privately a decade ago.
However, in reality I find there is much contemplation and concentration required for this type of “instant art”. It’s not so much hesitation from lack of an idea, or fear of spoiling the paper or canvas; nor is it the typical response from many viewers who come out with the old line, “Oh, my child could have done this!” It’s creative selection and omission with a semi-uncontrollable medium – liquid dropped and squirted from six feet onto a fairly small target from that height. In fact I spent a couple of days on each piece – they were done in tandem – because of the hours generally required for each spatter of paint droppings to fully dry before another colour was shaken, aimed and squirted. I also found that the thinner the paint dilution the more the radial splatter on the receiving paper surface, whereas a thicker mixture simply hit the paper and remained as a blob with no spreading traces of impact to show for it’s interrupted trajectory.
Because this series of four looks quite exciting hung together I would be prepared to offer a substantial discount (all four for the price of three) with free postage if all were purchased together.