William Kosman - Artiste Peintre

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

#64 - The Means to Expressing Emotion

                                                   "POLICE STOP II"

                                                    "Police Stop I"

Fellow Art Lovers:

A while ago, my wife and I saw a wonderful play at the Walnut Street Theater. It was “Red” by John Logan, and it told the story of Mark Rothko as he faced the task of painting huge murals for the then-new Manhattan restaurant The Four Seasons in the Seagram’s Building. The play itself takes place in Rothko’s studio, and the content is basically dialogue between Rothko and his assistant.

And, oh my gosh, that dialogue is full of so many ideas and so much emotion! Who could have thought that talk between two individuals could be so fascinating?

Among all of the ideas, one stood out for me: emotion. Rothko explains how important it was for him to provoke deep emotion within the viewers of his work.

Well, if you’ve been reading my blog, you know that Mark and I are on the same wavelength, and I’m sure there are more than a few more artists who feel the same way. The idea has been around for a while.

My new stamping ground, around Allegheny – basically between Kensington and Frankford – has given me a lot to get emotional about. Walking the streets, watching and talking with the people, taking in the long views from the platforms of the El – it all pumps my mind full of ideas and emotion. 

As I seek ways to express that emotion, as you know, the palette knife has taken on more importance. And, as I’ve recently explained, combining the use of the palette knife and the brush lets me take advantage of the speed, spontaneity and texture of the knife along with the precision and line of the brush. In that way, the emotion is found, not only in the completed work, but also in the very act of completing the work.

Therefore, if you have a minute, I’d like to ask you to look at two versions of the same scene. The one painted with the brush, Police Stop I, you’ve already seen. This work is relatively small and took several sessions to complete. The other, POLICE STOP II, painted with both the brush and the palette knife is a pretty large painting and took fewer sessions to paint.

So, if you have a few minutes, I’d love to hear your comments about your emotional reactions to both works.

Please remember, each of two clicks on the images doubles their size, and then you can use the return arrow to return each image to its original size.

As always, thanks for your time and support.