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Bi-Polar Thoughts on Knossos, 1996-1997, is a work built of two archaeological map fragments I had kept since my students days. They were always too intersting to discard. One was of the Palace at Knossos, the other seemed related, but without any trace of identification. I had no interest in researching its identity. Instead, I was fascinated to find my thinking to be inflected by such contrary impulses: identification made one plan tangible and comprehensible, while the unnamed plan appeared very remote and unavailable. I decided to position fiction and fact as equal verities and make this a work based on false atribution and artistic liberty. I composed a long image, setting the two plans in separated extension, calling one the newer and the other more ancient, and middle section suggesting a negotiation area to work out the differences between truth and falsehood. I entered this painting through a series of studies on paper, using photocopies and color transparencies, to examine the interconnections and rhythms of the two palace plans. The energies of the factual were arrived at in a graphic black, those of the newer or hypothetical in chemical or electric green, and the negotiation rhytms between in sharp magenta, with traces of both sources interjected. The final large painting maintained these orientations symbollizing acquired evidence (from the studies). Many revisionist layers applied over this would be further transubstantiation of the initial material. I had a calculated, structurally refigured Pollock idea at work here too like a decoded identification of his drips and movements geometrized but parallel to terms of gesture and mood correlations inherent in his creative process. This work was a formulated visualization of dichotomies. Like positions in debate, intent creates intensity and credibility, which is the issue in the end, instead of factuality.

Bi-Polar Thoughts on Knossos

Bi-Polar Thoughts on Knossos, 1996-1997
84" x 168" (213.36 cm x 426.72cm), oil on cotton

 

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