Tag Archives: perception

Expressive narrative in gouache

How to turn an emotional sensing, an idea into a narrative pictorial form? And how than to keep the imagination of the viewer further alert and open?

© Stefan J Schaffeld - Gouache on paper - 5 x 70x100cm (27.5 x 39.4")
© Stefan J Schaffeld – Gouache on paper – 5 x 70x100cm (27.5 x 39.4″)

With an experimental approach in gouache on paper, mostly executed with my naked fingers, the idea came across my mind during a visit of a swimming pool in Switzerland at the ‘Lake of Lucerne’.

Swimming is an free flowing act like the water you are in or the soul that moves around. It does not hold you back, only when you reach the boarder of the pool to turn or to climp out after finishing your turns in water.

Water, free flowing inside the pool and coming out from the shower.

Where am I in this? There is a story perhaps to tell. Perhaps it is just as free flowing without a limit. Or I am just about to leave the picture plane myself for find other images…

You are welcome to find your own story here, with your own experiences, with your own emotions. The flatness although representational form of my paintings should not keep you too long in a story.

Drawing in layers for deeper expression

How can one overcome the hurdle of flatness in a drawing? Isn’t the surface, mostly a kind of paper, pushing somehow to flatness?
There are the skills of an artist to mimic a three dimensional perception, based on what and how we learned to see the outer world: by shadows and light and by distorted shapes were our brain already learned from experience to see more than for example just a rectangle with two distorted rectangles alongside it: we see a cube!

EPSON MFP image And further our cognition skills see beyond the flatness. But only if this reflects our experienced and learned objects. A young child is more free here as it it doesn’t need to adhere to those learned patterns. For example the table with all legs stretching out at right angle into all four directions. An adult wants to see the table legs all going into one direction – downwards.

EPSON MFP imageSo far the theory.

What can a contemporary artist do to stretch the patterns and find new expressions of non-flatness?
Coming from the exhibition about Egon Schiele and Jenny Saville the in Kunsthaus Zurich , Switzerland, I found other ways to give the perception of non-flatness. One could overlap multiple drawings on top of each other, assuming that those layers are transparent or translucent.
Another way is done by Jenny Saville in her work ‘Oxyrhynchus – Untitled 2014’: http://artobserved.com/artimages/2014/07/Jenny-Savile_Oxyrhynchus_Untitled-2014_Gagosian-London.jpg

Overlaying images, oil and charcoal, intermitting, movement. All this together gives a multidimensional picture of even more than one object solely. Intriguing in its mere perception.

I think I will consider this in my own and further works.