‘There is only time for loving, and but an instant, so to speak, for that.’
– Mark Twain
Jouissance is a loaded word. ‘In French, ‘Jouissance’ means enjoyment, in terms both of rights and property, and of sexual orgasm — the latter has a meaning partially lacking in the English word “enjoyment”.
The titles from these works come from the poets. They worked in words, I work in images, I want the two to work in unison. But they are all about Love.
Wordsworth defined “poetry as the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings. He said that “it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility.” This definition comes from the idea of the poet’s creative process. That creative process begins directly from personal experience. When someone has a memorable experience, they sometimes express it by writing or painting and it is composed with a meaningful and beautiful word in mind.
‘For my mind would overflow with tenderness’ Is taken from a letter by Stuart Sutcliffe talking about his love for Astrid Kirchher
‘I do love a girl but I will speak little of her for my mind would overflow with tenderness’
I saw a film of computer generated explosion at a VFX company and when I slowed it down and played it backwards and forwards it looked poetic to me like a painting. I decided to paint it.
Some time later I was doing yoga and relaxing after practise and our French teacher was talking about yogic Buddhist philosophy. There are three Gods all equally important. Brahma as creator, Vishnu as preserver or protector, and Shiva as destroyer/transformer the God
of destruction thats when the image of the explosion appeared to me in colours. At the highest level, Shiva is regarded as limitless, transcendent, unchanging and formless.
I needed to paint the artificially generated explosion first to make it real – because it turns it into something else. It is originally a shadow of something. By that I mean it is a fabricated image or sequence of images of an explosion made by man – generated with non existent particles by software on a computer. It doesn’t happen in reality. When I paint it, it does ‘happen’, It’s organic and the process of physically making it removes it from a thing that doesn’t actually exist to one
that does. The irony is, it is an artistic image of something that is ceasing to exist that will exist forever.
After the original oils comes the hand finished diamond dust works.
If it goes into blackness in a square it’s more about ephemerality of life.
The final diamond dust is the result of the following process:
I paint an artificial digital image of an explosion created with a particle system. The original oil painting is scanned then I alter it digitally and colour it. This altered image is then printed and if is on canvas I paint over it. Then diamond dust is applied on top. Each of the different colours or ‘flavours’ as Warhol put it evokes a different response in the ‘experiencer’.
I love ‘Zabriskie Point’ by Antonioni the director of ‘Blow Up’. It ends in explosions and it influenced this series too.
I suppose you could say that ‘Jouissance’ is an image of an intellectual conception of cosmic order.
It’s about the elements and it is a Vanitas symbol. The explosion as a symbol or motif could be seen as the logical conclusion of artists fascination over the centuries with ‘De Natura’, ‘Vanitas’ and ‘effect’.
If Velazquez or JMW Turner were around today I think they would be painting explosions too.
I like the explosion because it conjures up many possibilities : Orgasm, celestial sensation, ecstacy, spirit, destruction, ephemerality, release of energy, a gem stone, blossoming flower, fertility …
– The joy of life. Release of Energy that is life.
‘All that is solid melts into air’ – Karl Marx
‘Pretty soon I’ll be blown away’ – Beach Boys
‘I still love explosions to this day’ – Ginger Baker
‘The free soul is rare, but you know it when you see it …’ – Bukowski
‘The very centre of your heart is where life begins, the most beautiful place on earth’
‘One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star’
– Christian Furr 2015