Unfolding Of A Vision


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presentation describes development of an artist's painting from 1999 to the present

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Unfolding Of A Vision

  1. 1. ABRAHAM ELTERMAN <ul><li>LONELINESS </li></ul><ul><li>The Unfolding of a Vision </li></ul><ul><li>Paintings 1999 - 2007 </li></ul>
  2. 2. <ul><li>Abraham Elterman’s painting has gone through major changes over the years. Yet, no matter what the appearance of the work at any given time, the set of issues that it deals with has remained remarkably consistent </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>The work deals with the value of individuality, with fear of loneliness and isolation and with connectedness </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Untitled, Oil/panel 38” x 50” 1999 </li></ul><ul><li>The year 1999 was a turning point. The paintings became large images (about 1.5m) of single objects which are barely contained by the canvas </li></ul><ul><li>The shape of the objects reach deep into the picture plane </li></ul>
  5. 5. The 1999 forms represent cut sections of seemingly larger objects, some of them covered by a shimmering skin
  6. 6. <ul><li>These paintings speak of individuality –they each establish an unmistakable presence and identity-- but also of loneliness and social isolation </li></ul>
  7. 7. The Exquisite Power of Conviction, Oil/Canvas 67” x 72” 2000 <ul><li>The next group of paintings came about in 2000 and --at first sight-- seem completely different </li></ul><ul><li>The sensuousness of the forms is still present but now there is a head-on view of elongated organic forms, that occupy the whole surface without allowing any background </li></ul>
  8. 8. Shimmering surfaces and concentric shapes are typical of the 2000 series
  9. 9. Untitled, Oil/canvas, 72”x 72”, 2000 <ul><li>The first painting in this 2000 series (left) can be understood as a transitional piece </li></ul><ul><li>Just like with the ‘99 paintings, the ‘object’ contains a large central shape and it sits on a background that reaches deep into the space; but this is a new type of image with segmented and elongated ‘arms’ that grow out of the canvas </li></ul><ul><li>Thus, this piece contains elements of both the ’99 and the 2000 series </li></ul>
  10. 10. The Devastating Ravages of Jealousy, Oil/Canvas, 60” x 72” , 2000 It is as if the mind’s eye has moved to look at the ‘99 paintings from above. The perspective has changed: instead of a sliced section from the front, we are looking down at the surface with the shimmering skin. The space in the painting has changed from a deep to a shallow one and the background has completely disappeared as the shapes grow out of the picture plane
  11. 11. The Allure of Powerful Friends Oil/canvas 72”x 72” 2000 <ul><li>The 2000 series are glamorous images of non-glamorous shapes. The monster-like forms are grotesque and monochromatic; they are repelling and at the same time, being soft and cuddled-- some people find them comforting. The coiled shapes express a longing for safety and protection </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>The next series of paintings (2001-2004) once again seem like a radical departure from those that came before. However, here there is also a transitional painting that helps explain this evolution. Like the 2000 paintings, this painting is monochromatic and covers the complete picture plane; but the elongated forms have been pinched, creating rounded, ovoid shapes and the raw nature of the 2000 series has been substituted to a more refined tone </li></ul>Untitled, 38” x 50”, oil/paper 2001
  13. 13. That Which Transforms, Oil/Canvas, 60” x 72”, 2002 <ul><li>The new paintings are composed of quintessentially feminine forms and they speak of connectedness and empathy. Each carefully defined, each frontal, the forms exhibit an inner sense of illumination </li></ul>
  14. 14. That Which Persists, Oil/canvas, 60”x 72”, 2003 <ul><li>The compositions can be thought of as a ‘balance of power’ among the individual forms </li></ul>
  15. 15. That Which We Cherish, Oil/canvas, 48”x 48”, 2003 <ul><li>As the forms softly push into each other they become a metaphor for self and other </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>In 2005 the work turns back to elongated forms, this time with a somewhat less organic character. Here the purpose has been to infuse a sense of a life into these structures </li></ul>Untitled, Oil/canvas, 60”x 72”, 2007
  17. 17. <ul><li>In this body of work some of the ideas introduced before are developed: the shimmering of surfaces, the reflection of colors. Rather that glowing from the inside, light is now reflected at the surface </li></ul>
  18. 18. <ul><li>The individual forms conform to each other preferring to be crowded rather than isolated </li></ul>Untitled, Oil/canvas, 26”x 30”, 2006
  19. 19. Untitled, Oil/canvas, 72”x 60” , 2007 <ul><li>The most recent work opens up the space: the objects fly as if they had been tied at one end and flung. The main theme remains: forms are either isolated or clump for companionship </li></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>The forms are simple but in their details and interactions they try to speak of in individuality, connectedness, intimacy, and empathy. They also tell of issues of power (as forms vie for space), dignity (as forms take center stage) and vulnerability (as forms appear fragile and interact softly) </li></ul>
  21. 22. Contact <ul><li>Abraham Elterman </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.abrahamelterman.com </li></ul><ul><li>(510) 658-4854 </li></ul>