Tablet / iPad Art (Digital Painting)

2013 to 2014

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Tablet / iPad Art (Digital Painting) Statement

I created these images using a tablet and several of the many digital painting programs that are available for them. The geometric and non-objective shapes recall artworks by early abstract painters such as Kazimir Malevich, Wassily Kandinsky, Piet Mondrian and Theo Van Doesburg. These fathers of modern abstraction were active in the early 20th century and initiated such movements as Suprematism, Neo Plasticism and De Stijl.

Another important aspect of these works is their connection to Pythagorean theory and mathematics. During the process of making each work, I made many compositional decisions using algorithms such as the Fibonacci Series (also called the Golden Mean or Golden Ratio). The Fibonacci Series is a simple algorithm that describes a numerical sequence in which each whole number is the sum of the previous two numbers in an infinite series (e.g., 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55...). There is beauty and mystery in this sequence because it is embedded in the structure of many things from the smallest organisms on Earth to the largest objects in the known Universe: snail shells, plant growth, hurricanes, the spiral structure of galaxies.

Although these images live comfortably alongside traditional abstract and non-objective artworks, they are distinctly "post-modern" in the sense that they were created on a tablet using readily-available painting and drawing apps. They now exist as digital information waiting to be printed using commercial methods such as Giclée or IRIS printing. Put another way, there is NO "authentic original" other than the digital file, which MUST be printed before the work is complete. In this sense, the work can be completed many times, each instance having an equal right to be called an authentic original provided the digital file remains unaltered. It's similar, perhaps, to an art installation or performance art wherein a work may be installed or performed multiple times in different contexts without losing its potency.

If I were now to recreate these images by hand with paint on canvas or panel (the preferred method of traditionalists), those works would then become COPIES of the original digital creations. This is an inversion of the expected dynamic in which a hand-painted original always PRECEDES a digital copy, and NOT the other way around. I believe this might be one of the few, if not the only way to detach a digital painting from the debased reputation of digital reproductions. I'm also quite convinced that the ease, portability and flexibility of tablet / iPad art will attract many more artists to this process in the future. It's unlikely that artists will ever give up their brushes (nothing beats the tactile experience of putting paint on a surface with a hairy stick), but sketchbooks might become a thing of the past.

If you're interested in purchasing any of these images, please see the shopping cart below or reach me through my Contact Page.

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© 2016, Terry Reynoldson