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“The artist invites the spectator to take a journey within the realm of the canvas. The spectator must move with the artist's shapes in and out, under and above, diagonally and horizontally… It is these movements that constitute the special essentialness of the… experience.”

Mark Rothko

(Scroll down to read about this portfolio)

As is the case with each of my portfolios, my colour field paintings reflect much of the intent expressed in Rothko’s quote. However, unlike colour field paintings that rely solely on the purity or subtle variance of colour to evoke an intellectual or emotional experience, each of the paintings in this portfolio invites the viewer to experience colour, as well as texture, space, and movement as vehicles in that experience. This is a departure from two of my other portfolios, Abstracts: Black and White and Hebrew Letters & Words; in those, I rely exclusively on the use of black and white shapes to explore the possibilities of composition.


In this particular portfolio, most paintings are conceived with an overall colour theme. Using a variety of brushes, and allowing the paint to run or drip freely, depending on the fullness of paint-to-water, many canvases begin with a wash of colour. In no few instances, composition forms and emerges organically. Those compositions further develop through a reliance on intuition, the spontaneous discovery of shapes and textural relationships, and a sense of push and pull where opacity (and therefore visual depth) might be conveyed. Depending on how these, along with visual movement, contribute to a painting’s evolution, I frequently choose to contain the emergent compositions within a frame, using that frame to juxtapose the viewer’s experience within the field with an implied relationship to what might exist beyond. To that point, frames are often employed to instill or heighten a sense of visual tension and evoke contemplation. Where shapes may be present, their limits are not always intended to be clean, precise, or straight; indeed, they usually are not, for while the definition of shape may be one thing, the presence of equivocation can sometimes make for a more engaging experience and dialogue with the viewer. 


In some instances, the titling of my paintings reflects a deliberate intent to contextualize what might otherwise be regarded as a wholly abstract composition – that is, non-representational and disconnected from any narrative. Thus, in several selected instances, titles reflect the abstraction of experiences, traditions, stories, or themes, many of which originate from my cultural identity. In other instances, titles speak of personal experiences or encounters.


In all, my colour field paintings invite the viewer to, as Rothko says, journey within each canvas. As they do, as they contemplate and respond, on some level or another, we dialogue.

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