Thirteen Persian Flasks, 2014. Gouache painting by Chanan Mazal, 46 x 61 cm
שלושה עשר בקבוקוים פרסיים, 20914. ציור גואש של חנן מזל
I started this one before my last visit to the US, and had a hard time going back to it. So I just went bonkers with splattering yellow and orange, and let it flow from there. Just let things go.
The controlled, cleanly drafted, identical bottles, all placed at an identical height, were in contradiction with the rest on the painting. So was my flat treatment of these bulbous forms, against the depth and flowing movement of the background
בקבוק פרסי, גואש ודיו. 46 * 61 ס”מ, 1.12.2014. למכירה
I truly tried to make this one ugly at first. It seemed as if the initial nasty color combinations and spooky undercurrents, were beyond my ability to turn into something with delicacy and conventional beauty. Did my self imposed challenge succeed?
מפה #6, 2014 ציור גואש 46 * 61 ס”מ
Autumn colors – though actually the palette was concocted by a self challange: I had several dried tubes of paint. Being of Polish Jewish origin, I must have inherited an ancestral fear of poverty, and aversion to waste. So I sliced open many of those hardened tubs, and crumbled the pigments into water. (Now this is NOT what artists should be publishing to promote their work!) And then asked myself, “What can you DO with this mess?
There is nothing that I enjoy more than finding beauty in a mess. Making harmony out of cacophony. Finding my directions on Paris’ confusing streets, without a map.
Two Vases 2014 by Chanan Mazal. Gouache 41 x 61 cm. Available.
שני אגרטלים , גואש, חנן מזל 2014 למכירה
Artists and others desiring to promote themselves, are not supposed to invite viewers to participate in critiquing their works. But I shall:
I was very happy with the mixture of wildness and “prettiness”. I often use this color palette of complementary reds and greens, and then break the sharp contrasts into musty grays. This time, the pallette gained a new meaning by surrounding the windy central white band. The white also added a feeling of depth. The while was so far away, outdoors.
I was tempted to leave the painting at this lovely abstract/ornamental stage, but I was not completely convinced by the composition.
Rather than added a new decorative element along the diagonals, I took the risk of adding an old, old convention: Vases, balanced on their toes like plump ballerinas.
My goal as an artist is to offer the viewer a paradox. Aesthetics plus curiosity is far more satisfying. I realized that the vases would flatten the depth and flowing movement of the strips of pattern. All the more so since I chose to paint them in the same flat manner as the background. What I gained is a tense composition. Balanced against all of the rules.