The Artists "Review" Artists Project was launched on June 30, 2008. Below is a "review" of Richard Schemmerer's work, Flight, written by Michael Konrad. Richard provided the second jpeg, an image of Float, as well as a brief response to Michael's "review."
Richard currently resides in Vancouver, WA, and Michael lives in Bronx, NY.
If you would like to participate in this project, please email me at jtkirkland [at] gmail [dot] com.
Flight is an acrylic painting on paper mounted on board -- an interesting choice of materials. I tend to associate works on paper with drawings or prints, or in the case of paintings, transparent washes of color. This painting, in contrast, appears to employ a painterly, abstract expressionist approach that I would normally expect to see on canvas. For that reason, it would be especially useful to see this painting in person; to see how it is constructed as an object, what kind of paper is used (there appears to be a horizontal seam across the midsection of the painting?) and how the paint is applied to the surface.
However, it is my task to review the artwork, and I must do so using the limited information available to me. Upon my first look at the painting, I was immediately reminded of the sculpture of Brancusi. The white, bird-like forms in the center of the picture not only reference the idea of flight through their aerodynamic shapes and upward trajectories, they also directly reference Brancusi’s Bird in Space series. I am less certain about the meaning behind the letter “B,” arranged throughout the picture in a stenciled font. My first response is to link the letter with Brancusi’s name, or the word “bird,” but that seems too obvious to be the artist’s sole intention. Or possibly it references B-52 or some kind of graphic associated with another type of aircraft. I am left wondering about the conceptual and compositional decisions behind this element.
If it were a type of music, there is no doubt in my mind that this would be Jazz. The painting’s structure feels pre-planned, but it appears to be executed quickly and with on-the-spot improvisation. The palette is limited, yet still results in a vibrant and celebratory color range. And the composition is complete and dense while alluding to airy and open concepts such as the feeling of flying.
The painting is part of a cyclus of 12 paintings called “ The five stages of being” and that’s what the B allures too ; to being and birth as in the birth of a soul, the soul taking flight/ lift off. It also is added as a mystery because it also represents in a faint way the number 13 the next number after a complete cycle of 12.
Thanks to Michael for his insight full observations which allowed me to see the work from an expanded perspective and appreciate it a new. Also thanks to J T to make this exchange possible.
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