Over millions of years the Yellowstone hotspot has been ripping a swath across the continent. Its geothermal features have nurtured the imagination for millennia and recently provided iconography for the American myth – most specifically with Old Faithful.
The Romanticist Hudson River School painters drew sustenance from this and similar geologic narratives, creating epic naturalistic depictions of vast and intact Nature. Later, in New York City, Abstract Expressionists would plumb the wilderness of the Spirit, developing disciplines of gesture and abstraction from its interior landscape.
As a painting subject the geyser offers an uncanny opportunity to honor and unite these two great painting schools. With a geyser, a gesture delivered with eruptive abandon yields a pictorially naturalistic result. Totally abstract and totally representational. In a word: sublime.
During Feb-March 2011 a selection of these works were shown at New York's The Phatory in an exhibition entitled Superheated Reservoirs: Geysers and Fingertraps.Posted by mark at May 21, 2011 10:57 PM