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Degree of Darkness

  • Degree of Darkness
August 25, 2014

The perception of color has been an object of contemplation and artistic examination for many a decades… Chromatic aberration, refractions and colored shadows are some of the concepts which have intrigued philosophers, scientists and artists. Many intriguing questions are raised in the space between the optical spectrum, as determined by Isaac Newton, and the phenomenon of perceiving color by human eye. However, on of the most puzzling ideas in relation to different aspects of the theories on color concerns the notion of darkness. Who is to say that this is only an absence of light? Perhaps, as Goethe put it, darkness represents an active element of production of color…

Degree of Darkness
Manuel Larralde, Autumn, 2013, segment

Manuel Larralde and Shaun McDowell

The play between hard and soft brushstrokes in an effort to create a reality which translates into fantasy renders Manuel Larralde’s work a symphony of light and shade. It is in his monochromatic paintings where the impact on the unconscious is reflected on the artist’s capacities to create imagery which seems to come to life as soon as perceived. Shaun McDowell also uses energetic brushstrokes to create a colorful surroundings for the figures he paints. The artistic expression of this artist form the United Kingdom seems to convey an internal conflict of a person who whishes to directly portray his feelings, yet wanting to be protective of them…

Degree of Darkness
Vanessa Garwood, Maria Sibylla Mercia, segment

Vanessa Garwood and William Roper-Curzon

Vanessa Garwood, working and residing in London, creates paintings which are focused on landscapes and on the figurative. When admiring her work, one cannot but feel as though someone gave a paintbrush to a Renaissance painter and set her to wonder free in the role of an emerging artist of contemporaneity. Also devoted to figurative and landscape artwork, William Roper-Curzon is an inspiring master of line. His use of charcoal, pencil, ink and pen brings to life mesmerizing portraits infused with strong emotion and expression. The striking images he creates make him a true explorer of light and darkness…

Degree of Darkness
Shaun McDowell, Cabaret, 2013, segment

Degree of Darkness Exhibition

Although physicists had been very reluctant to accept Goethe’s notions on colors, the poet’s thoughts had much influence on 20th century painters. The articulation of a notion called psychology of color had an impact on philosophers such as Schopenhauer and Wittgenstein, but also artists Turner and Kandinsky, to name some. One is certain, the thought-provoking contemplation of Goethe ripple through time and are going to be examined at the Rook & Raven Gallery during the group exhibition Degree of Darkness, between September 18th and October 4th 2014.

Degree of Darkness
William Roper-Curzon, artwork