Contemporary Abstraction, 2 paintings


I have been trying to find some examples of contemporary abstract painting that potentially offers something new as I naturally seem to gravitate to any work made before 1960. The book ‘Painting Abstraction, New Elements in Abstract Painting’ by Bob Nickas (Phaidon) had a couple examples of work that interested me. The painting below is by Vija Celmins ‘ Night Sky Painting No.1 1990 – 1991. Abstract art has a strong relationship with language and the use of titles or the lack of a title shapes how the image is presented. Vija Celmin’s Night Sky painting does something interesting as it could rest in either an abstract or the representational area. The key is that the title alludes us to the night sky and without it, it could just be a black painting with white dots. 

Celmins
Vija Celmins ‘ Night sky painting No.1 1990-91 oil on canvas on wood panel
22×181/2 in

Jules de Balincourt, primarily a landscape, figurative and sign painter seems to be somewhere in between abstraction and representational/figurative. ‘Untitled (Black Map)’ 2006 below offers an idea again of an image that could belong in either area. Even though initially it is titled as ‘untitled’ the ‘(Black Map)’ brings us to this idea of a map or a grid, possibly something nocturnal. This has got me thinking, I seem to be interested in transitional areas whether between the verbal and visual or between the figurative and the abstract.
Jule de Balincourt – Untitled (Black Map) 2006 oil and spray paint on panel
(120x150cm)

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