Scott Plear (RCA) & John King: Chroma-Tone
Image Caption: Scott Plear (RCA) Feast of Venus, 48″x70″, acrylic on canvas, 2018
Scott Plear (RCA)
“Painting— like all forms of expression, is about joining the various elemental qualities of the art form in the best combination to create an emotion. In painting, those qualities or elements are colour, value, shape, space, scale, and texture.
Painting is so complex. It is important to keep it direct and clear, yet rich and intricate. For it to have value, painting needs to tap into deeper often unnameable feelings.
If you get it right, it is like discovering the combination to a safe. With the right sequence, the safe will open, revealing its contents. Getting it right in painting will release in the viewer the feelings and therefore the magic of painting—its content. This experience can be repeated visit after visit. Some art requires only one look and offers little more upon a return to view. A great piece of art will renew and refresh constantly. To create such a work is rare.
Ideas will come and go. Eliminating them from your thoughts will let you get closer to the core of my work. This is not simple and requires the practice of looking. The experience of seeing needs to be cultivated.” – Scott Plear
“My 2018 paintings were inspired after I revived several of my interests from the 1970s: (1) Notan, a Japanese design concept involving the balance of light and dark shapes; (2) paintings with visually ambiguous images that encourage us to perceive a shape in two ways — as part of the background of the painting and also as a shape that sits in front of the background; and (3) the paintings of Joan Miro (Spanish painter, 1893-1983).
The first art book I owned was about Miro. Forty-five years later I’m still inspired by his words: “When I stand in front of a canvas, I never know what I’m going to do – and nobody is more surprised than I am at what comes out. … Little by little, I’ve reached the stage of using only a small number of forms and colors. It’s not the first time that painting has been done with a very narrow range of colors… I always feel the need to achieve the maximum of intensity with the minimum of means.
… I deliberately begin each painting spontaneously with a single brushstroke and no sketch beforehand. The first brushstroke creates the need for a second brushstroke, which in turn suggests a third, and so on. It’s similar to how jazz musicians improvise as they perform. My goal is for each painting to evolve similar to a spontaneous conversation among four actors: the canvas, the paint, the brush and myself. With no pre-planning, I’m always surprised to see shapes emerge that remind me of places, human anatomy, aquatic life, animals, plants, etc. If a shape or line consistently reminds me of something to the point of distraction, I’ll revise the painting to make it disappear or be less obvious. Once I begin a new painting, I’m preoccupied with creating a visually sustaining image, and questions about being historically relevant or original quickly disappear… – John King