Friday, May 21, 2004

Philip Bottenberg's "October 15, 2003"


Taking full advantage of this new toy, I figure that I can post an image from Philip Bottenberg's exhibit here.

It is called "October 15, 2003" and is oil on canvas, and four feet square.

While, obviously, all of Philip's paintings are different, this one has a couple of things in particular that you should be aware of. The blurriness that gives the sense of movement (or speed) is not something that he does regularly. Most of his paintings are very still, sort of like what you'd get if you took a photograph of the sky or underwater. There is only one other painting in the show that has the movement that October 15, 2003 has, and even then, it is much more muted.

Also, while your eye naturally follows the lines towards the center, the dots serve to break up the unrelenting g-forces that your mind is subjected to while viewing the painting. I'm certain that there is a very technical and at least three syllable word to describe it, but I don't know it. Feel free to call me a dummy while you're looking.

Mr. Bottenberg paints in layers, and while I could ask him directly "how many layers are on this one?" It is much more fun to guess. From my seat here, I count about eight or so. Then on top of all those layers there's gotta be at least a gazillion layers of varnish. Making the painting very shiny.

The glare of light on the painting shifts as the day progresses, which if you're only here to see it once, can be an annoying thing. But by having the opportunity to view it at different times of day it end up making me see and focus on different parts of the painting each time I look at it. Or in other words each time I look at it, it appears slightly different.

Cool toy, eh?

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