Archive for automatism

Is there anybody actually there? or is that just a blot on the landscape?

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY with tags , , , , , , , , on January 11, 2009 by echostains

austin-o-spare

 

 

austin-o-spare

In was in pursuit of researching artist’s who used automatism to express themselves,  I came across Austin Osman Spare (see   page 4 altered book: a matter of Life or Death‘) .  Following  Breton’s and Ernst’s lead, several artist’s applied automatic techniques to produce works.  Andre Masson forced himself to work under the influence of drugs, lack of food or sleep.

masson_automatic_drawing-1924

 

 

 

 

masson_automatic_drawing-1924

Alexander Cozens, an English watercolourist stimulated his imagination by using accidental blobs on paper to suggest abstract forms. 

alexander-cozens-a-blot-landscape-1770-80

 

 

 

 

alexander-cozens-a-blot-landscape-1770-80

British housewife Madge Gill (1882 -1961) became interested in spiritualism when two of her children died tragically, and she lost an eye through illness.  From 1919 she produced hundreds of ink drawings whilst in a trance like state – directed by her spirit guide Myrninerest.  Her drawings ranged from postcard size to 20 ft wide.  Her  work  included ‘spiritual or inspirational’ drawings, writings and singing, inspired piano playing, making knitted woollen clothes and weaving silk mats.

madge-gill-twosided-drawing

 

 

 

 

madge-gill-twosided-drawing

British painter Georgina Houghton gave up conventional art because of grief at the death of her sister, and began to produce ‘spirit drawings’ using coloured pencils, watercolours and inks.  Examples of her works are preserved in the Victorian Spiritualists Union in Melbourne.  They feature all over dynamic linear meshes of coloured spirels, vortexes and arabesques in which figure and ground are indistiguishable.  They have been claimed as the earliest abstract pictures.

I really must get back to my altered book.  It’s more difficult now my scanner has broken though, photographs are very hit and miss.

 

 

http://www.keithdelellisgallery.com/Exhibitions/Spirit/Spirit2index.html

http://www.answers.com/topic/surrealist-automatism

Art and the Subconscious: Sleight of mind

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 10, 2009 by echostains

 

dali persistence of time

 

Being fascinated with the subconscious and the art associated with it, starting with the Surrealists (see Max Ernst) and earlier post: ‘Altered book page 10 Freefalling Snake in the Grass’ and  ‘Altered art book page 4 A Qustion of Life and Death’   you will see what I mean.  Artist have used many different means to tap the subconscious.  Methods of producing paintings and drawings, writings and other works where the artist supresses conscious control over the movement of the hand, allowing the subconscious mind to take over is called automatism.

gisele-prassinos-reading-her-poems-to-the-surrealists

 

Automatism in its fully developed form is a 20th Century phenomenon.  The Dadaists made use of the basic idea, though they were more interested in chance effects than automatism as such.  For example, Dali after working in a variety of styles influenced by Cubism, Futurism and Metaphysical painting, turned to Surrealsm in 1929 and never looked back.  He transformed automatism into a more positive method which he called ‘Critical Paranoia’, eleaborating on images in his dreams and fantasies and merging them with the natural world.

salvador-dali-metamorphosis-of-narcissus-

salvador-dali-metamorphosis-of-narcissus-

 There are many paths into the subconscious though…….

To be continued