Untitled II – 1979/2023

ArtUntitled II – 1979/2023

Untitled II – 1979/2023

Mixed media assemblage. Linen, handcrafted bespoke red cedar stretcher (painting support), Elaborate restored antique gilt picture frame.

H97.6 x W84.3 cm

This is the second version (Original whereabouts unknown) of a series of explorative investigations into the traditional structure and finish of paintings. Painting supports or canvas stretchers appeared around 1500, work by Raphael being typical. Prior to this paintings were mostly done on wooden panels or on wall surfaces as murals. Wooden panels could be joined but when enlarged became cumbersome. Paintings were most often commissioned for site specific purposes in churches or other important spaces. Built to fit precisely, their imagery usually relayed narrative scenes from the bible.

Canvas on stretchers liberated panel paintings, in that they could be made to any desired scale, and importantly, they could be relocated. This new flexibility gave impetus to the painting becoming a tradeable commodity.

In this instance I have unshackled the canvas (linen) from its traditionally intended designation, that of being stretched over the support. I positioned the frame with its internal stretcher (with the wall surface visible beyond) inside of a larger support of stretched linen. This larger linen functions as the ultimate framing device.

This was initially created during undergraduate art studies at a school that favoured hard-edge abstract formalism.

Untitled II – 1979/2023
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