Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Mountain and Sea, Frankenthaler

This piece has been labeled as one of abstract expressionism.  Helen Frankenthaler first showed this massive piece (7ft by 10ft) in 1952. The way in which she made this work was completely new and later adopted and experimented with by other great artist of her time, such as Jackson Pollock. Her technique is called "soak stain" and it achieved when one does not prepare the canvas and paints directly on to it. The color then soaks into the canvas directly, allowing oil paints to appear like watercolors.  Mixing the paint with turpentine also advances the soaking effect. Unfortunately, this method does not keep the painting preserved. Because of the lack of prepped canvas, the painting will basically rot. However, it seems to me as a way in which the painting cements its relationship with nature. It has a life cycle like a living thing, bright in its beauty and fading as it ages, still appreciated for its beauty along the way. 

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