Sublime through digital. Documentation of work (below). I’ve been printing zoomed in, detailed parts of past paintings, and collaging them into new paintings, including into the lines of my current steel pieces. Adding digital process to the work, keeps it more situated in today’s society. This year my colour palette has become pretty intensely bright, rich gestures of process cyan, gold, copper & cardinal red dominating the pictorial space. I’ve always kept gold in my work due to the interest in retaining elements of history of painting; strength/vast use of this colour in Renaissance painting. The brighter use of colour (blues, pink, violets) more reflective of our ability to digitally manipulate imagery in this age–> brighten/contrast tool, readily available on our phones.

I was told & agreed, my imagery in term 1 didn’t have enough narrative to it, the abstract style being too familiar for a viewer. So I decided to take the successful/stronger parts of paintings, and appropriate these on to new objects/substrates (previous 2 blog posts). I’m exploring how the medium can be thrown into new dimensions & cycle back round to itself; being a painting on canvas.

I came across German artist Jutta Koether, multi-media artist who has a strong narrative throughout her practice, often re-producing classical paintings in her individual style. Her work is analysed in David Joselit’s essay Painting Beside Itself. Joselit raises the question; How does painting belong to a network? –>Considering the effects of avant-garde and digital, the medium has been asked to appropriate itself within new realms of viewing & understanding, possibly through performance, installation, photography, sound/music.

Koether explores how painting has a relation to elements of theoretical and counterculture. Giving the act of painting attitude and heightened significance; translating the medium into new contexts.

Historically for painting, the Dada movement equally sought to analyse how the medium might be adopted into new networks outside of it’s current state and be made more explicit; eg, Marcel Duchamp’s Readymades. I’ve been considering the use of found objects, manipulating these to elevate their aesthetic.

Joselit also references a term ‘transitivity’ in regards to Koether ‘actualizing the behaviour of objects within networks.’ Transitivity –> Expressing an action which passes over to an object. The concept of passage within painting.

The discussion of painting passing from being a cultural artefact through to the social networks surrounding it; Joselit believes Koether performs, displays and ignites the conversation for painting with great success and intellect, creating a passage for the medium to move through.

This term I’ve been trying to figure out the networks my own work lends itself too; whether that be through exhibiting within an institution, placing an object as decoration within a public social space or whether to push my painting into having a purpose; through fashion, furniture, design. I’m also in the process of figuring out a target audience, one which I’ve always hoped could simply be the general public. I possibly need to refine this sense of passage within my own work, through directing unique process.


Abigail Moffat