Götz comments: "The works are all about tension or discrepancy between the reality of the space and an abstract idea. I see the space, and I design this abstract painting in my studio, which then changes again completely because of the reality of the space. The moment it’s painted onto a wall, it becomes part of the space - part of reality, never completely abstract. There is a transition between abstraction and the real space; it’s this play that interests me."
Recalling working on one painting Garabedian comments: "One evening I started painting a standing figure. I got involved and it was just killing me. I was having so much trouble with it. I was working and working and finally after many hours, I said, 'Forget it.' I left and went home to bed. The next day I got up, went to the studio, saw it there, and was stunned. I thought, 'My God, you finally painted a figure.' It told me how to paint more, with these brushstrokes just constructing figures on pieces of panels. It was what they call a turning point or a breakthrough. I had these nine figures. Even today when I look at them, I feel good and like I accomplished something."
Browing comments: "There is never a plan or study for a piece in the beginning. That is just not a system that works for me. I’ve tried it, but I quickly realized that intuition, instinct, accident—whatever you want to call it—is the main driver of my work and the only way I get a piece that is “successful” to my eye. So for me, it’s pretty much the classic Abstract Expressionist approach: 'Make a mark, respond to that mark, etcetera.' So I would say at least 75 percent of each painting is made by trusting my gut and putting down colors and marks without really thinking them through. The other 25 percent of the process is where I will let a layer sit for a while and just look at it over a period of days, plotting my next move. That calculated choice may or may not remain in the final piece, but it is still an important part of the process. So in the end, the painting contains a cumulative effect of thoughtful decisions and purely felt acts."
Eastham writes: "Tuymans describes an approach defined by the artist’s decision to take inspiration from the world around him and his place in it. This is ‘a realism born of necessity. This country has been overrun by so many foreign powers that we don’t have time to be Romantic.’ ... Tuymans ‘decided very early on not to make art from art’. Rather than join with, or react against, prevailing movements in the practice and theorisation of contemporary art he sought instead to engage with the world as he perceived it, and the impulse remains ‘to start from something real’."
Pitcher remarks: "At some point I realized, I am living in Santa Barbara, so why not work outside? Also, there is that Eugène Boudin quote:, 'Two strokes in the field are worth two weeks in the studio.' In the field I often see something I could never make up ... I always begin the paintings outdoors, but then there is some fussing that needs to happen in the studio. Sometimes, when I work on them too much in the studio, I will lose it. For me, it has always been a balance between wanting to have that experience of motion and the abstraction in the studio. When one dominates the other, it doesn’t hold up.""
From the poscast post intrduction: "In his own words, Auerbach is suspicious of too much thinking: 'thinking about thinking', he says, 'isn’t true thinking…If one’s really thinking, one’s not aware of it'. Doing, for the artist, is everything."
Kate Connolly profiles painter Imi Knoebel, whose work is on view at White Cube Bermondsey, London through September 13, 2015.
Connolly writes: "Knoebel’s Drachen Serie (kite series) is arguably the highlight of the White Cube show in London. Seven kites – light, bright aluminium shapes that hover high up on the eight-metre wall – take up one room. Nine other works – aluminium shapes and mirrors, in fluorescents and pastels – fill another. A piece called Ort-Rosa (rose place) resembles the open corner of a room, inviting you to step inside. And there are several hovering paintings, simply nam"ed Bild (picture), that look as if a Malevich had been made out of wax and left in the sun to melt."
Nicole Eisenman and David Humphrey discuss their approaches to narrative and figurative painting.
Eisenman: "My thing is that I’m really into narrative. It’s not about the figure—it’s the storytelling that I’m stuck on. The meat and bones in my practice is somewhere between texture and storytelling."
Humphrey: "Something comes alive right when you’re trying to solve a problem in the picture. It might be: What kind of shoes are on this person? What kind of hat is that? Is that a swivel chair, is there a pattern on it? And in the aggregate of all that problem-solving you end up with a narrative that’s both bigger than, and intersecting with, the manifest narrative of people riding on a train or eating a meal or whatever."
Eisenman: "Somehow what’s happening in the picture gets eclipsed by the meaning of the accumulation of those objects and moments smooshed together. You can look at how those objects and things intersect with texture and structure to deepen the story."
Reed: "Painting is really good at absorbing the world around it. This used to be thought of as a weakness and people thought that painting had to be purified and become just itself. Such a stupid idea. It’s good that painting absorbs everything around itself. It makes painting alive, part of the world that it’s in. Painting especially loves other media. It’s great that painting can absorb other media. Paintings have this intense symbiotic relationship with film and digital media and photography. I mean, they used to think photography would destroy painting. But instead it’s as if photography is the vampire that has bitten painting. The vampire’s kiss of photography, instead of killing painting, has made it another vampire, immortal."
Heilmann: " I like to think of the subject matter and the image in a painted picture in the same way, and I’m getting a lot of my ideas and inspirations from commercials. They’re so brilliant, how they’re made and how they’re timed. So I don’t think it’s dead, painting; I don’t think film and TV are going to kill it. Because the kind of work you go through in making paintings, like ruminating and thinking, and actually using your hands, that’s a big difference from other mediums."
Bogin comments: "I have a long-standing interest in logos and signage and their ability to communicate a wide range of information in a compact image. By coopting parts of that language I am able to communicate non-specific references and influences in a way that make them accessible but still mysterious... I like the tension created by referencing a language that we expect to deliver some sort of information or message but keeping that message elusive to create a more contemplative moment."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.