Laws of Form series #6


United Kingdom

Painting
Size: 11.8 H x 7.9 W x 0.1 in

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Art Description

Painting: Gouache on Paper.

This is one of a large series of works depicting circular forms using ink and gouache on paper. The circle is perhaps the most basic form that exists. Spheres were the first forms to appear in the universe when cosmic dust coalesced into planets, and the circle has been used as a symbol of infinity and cosmic unity by countless cultures. It recurs throughout art history, and artists have been endlessly fascinated by both the simplicity and the complexity of this shape.

The Laws of Form series are in part a tribute to the work of George Spencer-Brown, a little known mathematician and philosopher and former protege of Bertrand Russell. Spencer-Brown devised an entire mathematical description of reality using a rigorous logical system based on the 'form' or the 'cut'. He used the image of the circle to represent the most basic distinction that can be made between nothingness and something. Before there is form there is nothing; as soon as we draw a distinction (the 'form') there is everything.

These paintings are both meditative and contemplative, and invite the viewer to think about the nature of reality and existence, just as the Enso paintings do in the eastern tradition. They are painted entirely freehand, and require intense concentration and control of materials.

Because of the pigments used, and the way they are applied, the paintings are very difficult to photograph accurately as cameras are often not able to capture the subtle and intense ways in which the colours interact with different lighting conditions. Every attempt has been made to represent the painting as accurately as possible by matching the photograph to the appearance of the painting in flat daylight.

Keywords: purple, vivid, circle, colourful, meditation

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