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Monday, May 25, 2015

Painting the South African Veld

The abstract trees were one of my most enjoyable projects ever. But as I have been a landscape painter for most of my life, rendering one west coast scene after another, I decided to return to landscape. Plain air painting would be wonderful, but being past the stage where I can freely wander, I decided to work from all the images I have taken in bush veld. I also decided that although I would use my favourite purple liberally, I would try to copy the real colours of the South African veld.

Have you ever driven along hardly accessible little inroads? Have heard felt the dry saplings of many trees scratching your vehicle? I hope these paintings will recreate that particular sensation.

Greet the Morning

A Bright New Morning

Take me There

The Wild Yellow Orchids

A Sunny Winter's Afternoon at Kloof
(with Charlotte, the Cream Donkey)

Rocky Road at Tala

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Abstract Tree Paintings by South African Impressionist Artist Marie Theron

The palette knife, that I do not often use, played a great role in my abstracts as I slashed out the verticals of the forest with black paint. The black network provided the ideal shapes for filling in. First I used lots of skins of dry acrylic paint, pulled from paper palettes. I cut the recyclable paint with sharp scissors and used the palette knife to cover the backs with white or cerulean blue/white mix, then stuck them onto the canvas. All shapes were then blended into the painting with more paint until I have created the atmosphere that I wanted to portray, the atmosphere of a kind forest providing health and shelter and peace to men and animals.

"Forest Glade"
460mm x 350mm
18" x 14"
US$ 245

To view or buy: go HERE

"Secrets of the Forest"
300mm x 300mm
12" x 12"
Acrylic and Acrylic Collage on Canvas
US$ 163
R 1500

To view or buy, click HERE


Friday, April 17, 2015

"Forest Cathedral" an abstract painting by South African artist Marie Theron

Is it possible to paint an entirely non-representational work of art? Even the most abstract work is usually abstracted from nature, or maybe from ideas and emotions...there is something there. And like the eye that is forced to look upon a dirt wall, we start seeing some images. I remember in my knotty pine bedroom ceiling there was a little pigmy complete with  a sword that probably only I could see. Even Leonardo da Vinci recommended that artists do that. This is a quote from a Tate Gallery article called "The deliberate accident in art"

Ever since Leonardo da Vinci urged artists to search for inspiration in the dirt on walls or the streaked patterns in stones, they have found that the accidental blot, the chance mark, or the naturally occurring stain can be a starting point for some extraordinary art.

I have decided to do more paintings in the  same style as "Forest Rain". I once again started with an organic shape. You can see the tree-like image in the right side of the painting. I then created a dark green forest floor to lead the eye into the painting. Harmonizing and contrasting colours were placed and I followed a square grid to bring an order of an architectural nature into the work. Do you agree with me that the theme; "Forest Cathedral" is suitable?

Friday, March 27, 2015

Mondrian, the Verticals and the Horizontals

A note by Mondrian: If the masculine is the vertical line, then a man will recognize this element in the rising line of a forest; in the horizontal lines of the sea he will see his complement. Woman, with the horizontal line as element, sees herself in the recumbent lines of the sea, and her complement in the vertical lines of the forest. (his remark on his two paintings ‘Sea’ and ‘Trees’, both made in 1912.

* source, famous Dutch people life quotes: note in his sketchbook; as quoted in “Mondrian, -The Art of Destruction”, Carel Blotkamp, Reaktion Books LTD. London 2001, p. 70.

I decided to use these thoughts of Mondrian as the base for my abstract tree paintings. As I slash and slash my canvas to get those sharp sword-like (masculine) lines, I like to think about the images of war. Soon, a little war of words (with lots of laughing) started at home. My beautiful very feminine daughter and two grand-daughters would have loved to be Joan of Arc. They believe they stand upright in life...forget about the docile, reclining, beach or forest floor feminine image......Oh, dear, am I rambling here and forgetting about the paintings?
In these paintings I kept both Mondrian's lines and Kandinsky's colour theories in mind. Here we have the advancing yellows and the receding blues to animate the picture surface. Though abstract, nothing appears to be only on one level. As I mentioned in the previous post, I always abstract from something, in this instance nature, so that my paintings will recall reality.

Tall Trees I

by South African Abstract Impressionistic Landscape Artist Marie Theron
12.5 x 17.5cm (5 x 7 inches)
Acrylic and recycled acrylic skins on canvas

View or Buy

Tall Trees II

by South African Abstract Impressionistic Landscape Artist Marie Theron
12.5 x 17.5cm (5 x 7 inches)
Acrylic on canvas

View or Buy

Tall Trees III

by South African Abstract Impressionistic Landscape Artist Marie Theron
12.5 x 17.5cm (5 x 7 inches)
Acrylic on canvas

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Forest Rain, an abstract image.

Now I am really into abstraction all of a sudden.  This is my painting "Forest Rain" done several years ago. To abstract something, you start with here. I will present these posts as lessons in abstraction, because many artists ask the question: How does one start an abstract painting?

"Forest Rain" by South African Impressionist Painter Marie Theron
200mm x 300mm
Watercolour and Acrylic paints on thick watercolour paper.
Remember, an artist goes from reality to abstraction. I first made definite organic type of lines representing plant life. In my past posts, I have painted many realistic trees. To view some of my realistic trees, go HERE or HERE. The image "tree" is therefore already somewhere in my mind, in a place where information is stored. 

I often visit galleries or go through newsletters and blogs to view abstract works...and there is one very common lack in many of them: there is no depth. To my mind Kandinsky was the King of Abstract Painting. But take note, he studied the value of colours. He knew which were advancing colours and which were receding, and so the surfaces of his abstract paintings were alive with depth and perspective and movement. An abstract need not be a series of forms and lines all on one plane. Go HERE to view Kandinsky's beautiful works.

Once I have a framework drawing, it is time to start creating. First I do some automatic painting: I cover the format with patches of colour and get rid of the white surface. I love a real mess without sense at first. Chaos! After that, I go into "flow". I think of the theme, in this instance it was a forest during a shower. Some edges are dull and some objects just a blur! There are smells and sounds and so much to see and there is depth in a forest. I enjoy the process of trying to create that feeling.

I do hope that you can feel the atmosphere in this painting. In the weeks to come, I will create abstracts where I begin with tree outlines and then abstracting them from there. I will try to describe the process of creating them and hope it can help others to experiment.

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