4 ARTISTS: YUESIL CHU, SYDNEY DRUM, BUSSER HOWELL, MOKLESA D. SHAH
Time and universality are the themes I find most exciting and intriguing in my work. I conceptually portray the construction of the universe and the phenomenon of infinity, traveling though endless time. Evolution is a constant reminder of the beginning and future of life. In my acrylic paintings, I ask the viewer to see the universe, evolution, time and space encoded with the common language of numbers. This is evident in the amount of layering and technique in which I paint. The concept derives its inspiration from the use of systematic number lines. The line arrangement produces a pulsating environment that evolves continuously. My densely filled number paintings conjure an inclusive infinite universality. Micro and macro views from dots, numbers and lines in my work are combined showing spatial views, which suggest both an expanding universe and the movement of subatomic particles or basic human cells. I portray this spatial phenomenon through wavy geometric lines of varying values.
My large paintings explore the intersections of painting, digital media, photography, and other sources. These works combine alternating panels of representation and abstraction. Some panels are hand-painted (a labor-intensive, low-tech method); others use digital technology to explore how this technology has changed the way we view painting and the world around us (an emphatically high-tech process.) This juxtaposition is intended to engage the viewer in a dialog about these different approaches in contemporary artwork. In my work, these various modalities interact, but without one mode dominating another, and suggest a dialog of constantly shifting visions.
My smaller digital prints on paper, and paintings on paper continue a variety of ideas. The smaller paintings on paper are totally abstract, using narrow white lines to grid vertical bars of vivid color. These paintings on paper use chemical components which either blend or resist neighboring colors, and which produce areas of intense color saturation.
I created my new body of work in the last part of 2008 and beginning of 2009. It evolved from a new process I started over a year ago that incorporates a new technique and new format. My objective has always been to reduce my work to its minimal form while still maintaining strength of design, color, and form. Starting with the contrasting of vertical and horizontal, I progressed to a circular motif, a strictly vertical motif, a random pattern, and finally evolved to the square motif that I now find to be the strongest form. The contrast of vertical and horizontal within the square format introduces a contradiction of separate forces that oppose each other while still forming a whole. Although it gets elongated and turned into a more rectilinear pattern, it is still the square that dictates the center of the contrasting vertical and horizontal forms.
These large geometric pieces are worked in heavy impastos of acrylic paint. I apply the paint with my hands, and the irregular lines are made with my fingers, making these works the most physically involved paintings I have produced to date. This is reflected in the sculpted, irregular surfaces and rough sides of the canvas.
When viewing these works, one sees first the overall form. One experiences the sense of a geometric form that is pleasing to the inner self. On another level, the viewer sees the impression of shapes with the overall form, and finally is drawn into the piece through the random lines, slight variations of color, and the awareness of contrasting colors underneath the surface that bring forth a sense of becoming and change.
MOKLESA D. SHAH
My idea came from my immediate environment and situation. I experimented with many sorts of forms and media. An experiment in one piece can provide the foundation for the next. Essentially, I have a very basic ethic behind my work. Basic shapes, lines and images give me a wide variety of building blocks from which to create life. Each of these simple formative expressions of visual thought are an external realization of things readily reproduced in nature. It seems that my painting and drawing have their own life and I let them grow their own way. I do not have any control over them. These formative expressions are intended to be simple visualizations of my thoughts and close to my nature. I am attracted to the simplicity of the means to achieve a complexity of forms.