Ian's Challenge - November - BlueBrown

“BlueBrown” is a painting inspired from winter walks around the Wild Duck Pond, part of the Saddle River County Park system. It is heavily influenced by one of my favorite artists, Mark Rothko.

Rothko was part of the Abstract Expressionist Movement. The movement was the first American movement that challenged Europe as the center of the art world, and would eventually move it from Paris, France to New York City.

Other noted members of this movement include Hans Hofmann, Arshile Gorky, Willem de Kooning, Clyfford Still, Barnett Newman, David Smith, Jackson Pollack, Franz Kline, and Robert Motherwell.

The philosophy that united these artists was the idea that art did not need to represent something in order to be valid. Form, color, and gesture, driven from an emotional, subconscious, spontaneous, and expressive response were thought to be enough to qualify it as the subject matter in the piece.

There were considered to be two major groups of the movement, Color Field Paintings and Action Paintings. Rothko would fall into the color field category.

Examples of action painters would be Franz Klein and Jackson Pollack.

Their approach to painting was more aggressive. Evidence by the large, black brush strokes in Klein’s work, and the drip paintings created by Jackson Pollack.

Rothko’s works were much more reflective. The glowing fields of color hovering in place by some atmospheric gravity, draws you into an unknown but welcoming environment. Spaces where you can safely liberate your soul for a short time floating free and uncompromised. The paintings do not rely on a representational image to attract your interest; instead they demand that you observe them from a raw, groundless position; forcing you to look not at a scene, or picture, but inwardly coming to terms with your own feelings and emotions.

“BlueBrown” is intended to capture the shifting of time. When the onset of winter morphs the landscape once warmed from the sun, into a frozen panorama that chills you to the bone. Yet in spite of it, you are succumbed by its beauty and it infuses new life into your spirit.

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