Sunday, May 17, 2009

Project 3: Scherzo Action

Having worked for over five weeks experimenting and having tremendous fun with each different approach to making free abstracts it was now time to bring together all that I had learned and discovered and make my final pieces that hopefully would be good enough to stand for this project.

The previous posting (Action Painting) was the precurser to this - a warm-up, if you like. But what was it to be?

As often happens I probably do my best thinking in bed lying awake during the night ruminating on these things, and having made an extensive study the previous day on Wassily Kandinsky (an artist whose work I thought I didn't like, but after looking closely discovered I do, especially his earlier abstract painting) who also loved music and tried to capture the feelings listening to music generated I got my BIG idea: I would paint my own interpretation of the "Scherzo" from A Midsummer Night's Dream by Felix Mendelssohn. I love this music. It is the linking Intermezzo between Act 1 and Act 2 describing in music the fairy procession through the forest of Titania, Queen of the Fairies, with her 'changeling child' before they are "ill met by moonlight" by Oberon. [The link takes you to what I consider to be the definitive 1935 film version with the beautiful Olivia de Havilland as Titania, James Cagney as Bottom, and the brilliant Mickey Rooney as Robin Goodfellow - Puck, and the Scherzo starts properly at 4:00minutes. Worth a watch!]

To get myself into this concept I started with a couple of pastel studies made while playing the music over and over again:

Neocolours on paper, 3xA4+1xA3.

Dry Pastels on paper, 3xA4+1xA3.

The dry pastels allowed me more easily to block-in areas rather than just thin lines, although if I had wet the Neocolours I could probably have achieved the same end.

Next, I moved on to acrylics and made about four different versions, two of which are shown here:

Acrylics on paper, 2xA2ish.
I was trying here to get a better feeling for the forest at midnight.

Acrylics on paper, can't remember the size.
I've got the dancing movement, and now the concept has developed - The final piece will be painted as a diptych on two panels of primed hardboard, each 61x120cm making the final painting 2.4 metres long!

Using household paint and brushes I lay this first statement down:

Household emulsion on hardboard, 61x240cm.
Uncertainty creeps in. I like it but am unsure if it really what I want. It is the end of a hard's work and I am tired, so I will come back to it tomorrow to see where it should go from here.
(As a hint, I think better things are yet to follow ;o)

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