|Matthew J. Mahler, B T W #1[by the way], 2013, acrylic and dye on canvas, 36 x 40 inches. Courtesy of Sardine.|
In fall 2012, the flooding and devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy prompted me to think about processes like soaking and staining; in the studio I started to thin binder-and-pigment mixtures with water, pouring them onto wet, raw canvas and letting them absorb. A few months later, Helen Frankenthaler’s 2013 show at Gagosian spurred me to revisit Color Field painting, which I’d never been especially drawn to before. Newly attuned, I noticed that more and more artists had embraced staining, bleaching, and dyeing. Below is an image round-up encompassing a few artists who, at one time or another, have treated canvas and fabric like the woven materials they are, rather than transforming them through finely-prepared grounds, modeling paste, or thick applications of paint.
|Saira McLaren, untitled, 2013, acrylic dye on raw linen, 16 x 20 inches. courtesy of Sargent’s Daughters.|
Piotr Uklanski, installation view at Gagosian. These 2010 paintings are made with fiber-active dye on oxidized cotton textile stretched over cotton canvas. Image courtesy of Gagosian. Photography by Robert McKeever.
|Angelina Gualdoni, Ballast, 2013, oil and acrylic on canvas, 38 x 36 inches. Courtesy of Asya Geisberg.
|Sarah Faux, Shadow II, 2013, dye, bleach and oil on canvas.
Meg Lipke, Felt Sample, 2013; fabric dye, beeswax and acrylic on wool felt; 8 x 10 inches. Courtesy of Parallel Art Space.
Halsey Hathaway, Untitled, 2012, acrylic on dyed canvas, 60 x 30 inches. Courtesy of Rawson Projects.
|Sharon Butler, 24 x 24 (Sandy), 2013; pigment and binder, pencil, thread on canvas and linen tarp; 24 x 24 inches. Courtesy of Pocket Utopia.|
Further reading: Check out artists Brece Honeycutt and Amy Wilson who are deeply involved with textiles, fibers and hand dyeing. Honeycutt makes her own dyes from plants and nuts.
Resolution and dissolution at once: Angela Gualdoni at Asya Geisberg
NY Times Art in Review: Richard Tuttle, Richard Phillips (2009)
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Marilyn Levin did a series called 'Cycles of Time' that I saw at Toomey-Tourell Gallery, here in San Francisco, using bleach and watercolor on rag paper. I guess she is a Boston artist. Exquisite work. Marian
It also makes me think of Sam Falls, who has let colored fabric become sun-bleached: http://oh-wow.com/exhibits/somewhere-to-go/