In the studio I have been returning to typographic practice in a new abstract way. These recent pieces are a mix of ink drawing, photography and collage composed with my process of digital alchemy. Buildings are big, the body is . . . human sized. These pieces consider scale, in terms of both architecture and maker. Largeness interrupted by the slightness of a memory, a figure, the intimate handprint of dirt and atmosphere and time. They continue the Construction/Reconstruction series based on construction sites and ruins and the blurred space in between.
In a break from my usual process I am beginning with pure drawing, using for my “brush” tools made of wood and steel that have hard edges designed for the work of construction. Working either from a photograph or memory I explore architectural space as I would a letterform: drawing the structure and drawing the air around it. Along the way I have found myself in the pure territory of composition, revisiting the lessons of Mondrian and the austerities of the Bauhaus.
The first set of images here show early studies that go back and forth between drawing and digital blending. The completed pieces that follow are all editioned as archival pigment prints. As with my other new media work they are not reproductions of paintings, but contemporary printmaking in which the print itself is the final art.
As I scanned and deconstructed the original drawings I entered what I think of as a Mid-Century Modern Moment. Mondrian hovered at my shoulder and advised. It was a rigorous process of sacrifice and minimalisation that shaped his path from “drawing a tree” to knowing the space between branches. Although I always thought his older work was emotionally bloodless, the sense of mystery in his reductive methods stayed with me. Pieces like “Broadway Boogie Woogie” are as much a part of my DNA as formica and ashtray mosaics – and they come with a great soundtrack. By working with ink and soft absorbent papers incapable of truly hard edges I have invited the human element to re-surface. The piece below is as much about the sensual experience of paper as it is about the mind.