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Centaur Painting 5

Acrylic Paint on Canvas, September 2000, 75cm x 60cm

Centaur Painting 5

The origin of this painting is from a photograph of the Centaur sculpture taken in bright sunshine with a very distinctive shadow. Thus this painting is effectively two figures in a simple background field. One figure is the Centaur sculpture, the other the shadow of the sculpture. The simple shift here is that the shadow is camouflaged in the same way as the form with a series of flat colours making it more difficult to discern which is which, or even to guess that one is the shadow of the other.

To distinguish the ‘shadow’ from the ‘sculpture’ the subtle clue is simply several overlapping ‘legs’ – a classic Perspective visual cue.

With the camouflaging of the ‘shadow’ as another brightly painted 3D form, this opens the way for the painting to be viewed as two distinct images if hung either vertically or horizontally. Effectively, this creates two pictures in one. This effect is further enhanced by the nondescript background which suggests a cubic room as a backdrop. The lack of a distinct horizon line is the final visual cue that allows the painting to be viewed in more than one way.

The imagery on the Centaur forms reflects earlier paintings. The colours are limited to four to each form and are painted smooth with no tonal variations.

On both forms, the paintwork is deliberately vague between defining what is the 3D Centaur form and what is the surface image painted on the 3D form. This allows for multiple interpretations of the images.

In several cases on the yellow form this is take to the extreme of painting the surface imagery in such a way to suggest the ‘legs’ of the Centaur are ‘pasted’ onto the surface of the canvas rather than being part of the 3D Centaur form.



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