Collages

stlukesguild

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Since Nu Focus asked, I'll post some of my collages from years ago. I did make some abstract paintings shortly after art school but have no pictures of them. About 15 or so years ago I lost my huge studio in Cleveland and was forced to work in a small apartment. At least now I have a bedroom that I was able to convert into a studio. Then, all I had was the dining room table.

I had long been an admirer of Joseph Cornell, Kurt Schwitters, and Paul Klee. I was also an incurable bibliophile. Around the time when I lost my studio, I attended a professional development meeting given by a collage artist. All the teachers were to make their own collage. I made this work... which opened up the possibility of an art I could do in my limited work space:

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-A Sonnet for Emily

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-The Silken Ladder

Not long after my earliest collage efforts, we got a new studio (the one I was forced to abandon this past May). I was then able to experiement more with inks... and later with oil paints.

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-Tense and on Edge

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-A Balancing Act

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-The Three Kingdoms

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-Fallen Angel

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-The Nightengale Approaching

Besides Cornell, Schwitters, and Klee I was looking a lot at calligraphy (especially Chinese and Japanese), graffiti, Motherwell, Marcarelli, Hanelore Baron, James Michael Starr, LA Wilson, John Spinks, Robert Nickle, and others. I communicated a good deal with the collage artist, Cecil Touchon who ran a museum dedicated to collage and assemblage in Mexico City. He and the director of the National Collage Society asked me to write an essay for their magazine. Around this time, I began to work in a more geometric manner and think of the structure and the variations in my work as akin to music... especially that of J.S. Bach.

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-Ghost Sonata

104-Theocritus meets BachExcursions into Greek Philosophy.JPG

-Excursions into Greek Philosophy

105-Winter Meditations upon a Theme by J.S. Bach-Thomas Moresm.JPG

-Winter Meditations

Around this time, I was posting these works on Wetcanvas and often ended up in debates with our Brian and Ian (from WC) and I was the one defending Abstract Art.
 
I love the bold black and white ones.
There is a painter in France who works with blacks and textures. Some of those brush strokes of black remind me of his work.
His name is Soulages. His work is entirely abstract.
 
Wow SLG!! So interesting!! Thank you so much for sharing.
I love the three kingdoms, the fallen angel and the nightingale!
 
I love the bold black and white ones.
There is a painter in France who works with blacks and textures. Some of those brush strokes of black remind me of his work.
His name is Soulages. His work is entirely abstract.
Pierre Soulages does wonderful things with black!!
 
Ghost Sonata
Excursions into Greek Philosophy
Winter Meditations
(y)
 
Nufocus- I love the three kingdoms, the fallen angel and the nightingale!

John Emmett-
Ghost Sonata
Excursions into Greek Philosophy
Winter Meditations
(y)


Thanks to you both. My personal taste leans toward the Ghost Sonata, Excursions into Greek Philosophy, Winter Meditations, and others in that series... but The Nightengale Approaching and Fallen Angel are two of my favorites from the earlier, more dramatic collages that employed sumi and sepia inks.
 
Here are a few more of the earlier ink-based works:

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-Black Sun

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-The Dream of the Red Chamber

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-Coil and Buttress

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-The Passion (Crown of Thorns)

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-Flow

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-Judith

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-Hammering

I would begin these by spreading out 50 or so pages from old books on the floor... looking for unprimed paper that would allow the ink to bleed and allow the various pigments to form something of a rainbow. I would then paint a series of gestures and then allow these to dry... choosing maybe 1 or 2 out of the 50... or fragments of these gestures... to use. The rest went into the trash.

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-Here I am with two of my studio partners from the time and an entire wall of these collages.

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Here I am with some more gestures on the floor and 60 of the collages framed as a triptych entitled "Lamentations". This work made it to the final cut for a major museum exhibition which is why it was framed. I was later informed by a museum employee that the work was never unpackaged (it was wrapped in brown paper and bubble wrap) because the judges didn't want any large works. :mad:
 
I love your collages! I always see connections, but I'm sometimes reluctant to mention them to the artist, lest I offend. However, I shall mention anyway that some of your collages remind me of Robert Motherwell, one of my favourite artists.
 
Wow! I assume you’ve showed us these sepia prints before but I want to say that these are great! Love love love them...they’re bold and free...and lyrical. Yes, Motherwellian.
 
Love these collages! The group hanging together has a lot of impact. You have also used some origami in these, right? ... The silken ladder is another of my favorites.
 
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