Written in April 2010 while making the piece ‘Her’
Sculpting like a painter
Anish Kapoor says that he is a ‘ painter working as a sculptor ‘.
I like oil paintings very much and think I would like to be a painter.
The reason I think I would like to be a painter at the moment is about illusion.
I envy the painters ability to escape the reality, there are reams of information missing but the image is just as arresting. Potentially arresting because of this missing information, this fudging of life. Nathon Fords work has this ( http://www.beauxartsbath.co.uk/Ford09/Pages/Index09.html ) Clarity appears only in small traces, like in life when clear thoughts appear they are more potent, more real.
I looked back into my sketchbook to find the quote about Anish Kapoor from a recent trip to the Guggenheim, it says there in his words, ‘art is illusion, it’s the illusion that goes deeper to the real’. I was originally excited about this piece because I always wanted to make my dress like this, sections of core ten like a bridge but maybe it was in fact this piece that made me understand more clearly.
For now, my illusion is the illusion I see in painting, in thick oil paint. Is this possible within the three dimensions of clay? It is there, it has to be all there, it is not an illusion, and there are no clever kapoor tricks in a seated figure. With my work you walk round the back………a painting of a head has no back and does not need one.
But the last few days I have found a bit of peace with this issue and perhaps a way of remaining a sculptor.
The clay is so like oil paint, always has been. So like charcoal, the image is there and then it’s gone. It is easy to pile on, scrape off, smudge, fudge. So I have to rely on surface like a painter does. Be a sculptor, but my paint is clay.