September 10, 2010

strategies for wrecking paintings...

As a painter I have so many strategies for "tarnishing" the image on the canvas. I find nothing more tedious that a painting that leaves nothing for the eye to do. It's like a child pounding on the piano keys, as if getting all the notes were the only challenge to making music.

So I routinely wreck my paintings in order to save them from a worse fate. I spread turpentine on them, I scrape them, I rub them, I brush them--sometimes I throw things at them. They're almost always better as a result.

Here's one of my current favorite strategies which simply involves taking a dry brush and raking the wet paint. Gerhard Richter does this all the time and puts the results in the Museum of Modern Art.

Here's something from Richter:


  1. Thanks for sharing your insight, putting into words what I have often felt, and not always acted upon-Go forth!