Thursday, March 21, 2013

Contemporary Floral

Bucket Bouquet
40 x 30
How do you take a traditional - and feminine - subject like florals and make them contemporary?  I've given that a lot of thought because I love to paint flowers but don't like them to look like they should only be in a woman's room. ``Bucket Bouquet`` is an attempt to bring flowers into a more modern context.

I used a lot of my new favourite colour, pthalo green, in this piece; I bought it for Mexico and am hooked, for now, at least.  It`s powerful and quite unnatural, forcing me to avoid an earthy background which puts the painting into a more traditional setting.  By putting that colour in early, I could guide the painting towards my goal, because no realistic painting of flowers would harmonize with it.  This was liberating!  The flowers became simply colour, mass, edge and pattern, and I could explore those elements without feeling like I had to define a single bloom.  I enjoyed creating and then obscuring the silhouette of the flowers against their background, trying to get as many interesting edges as possible.

Some other deliberate choices that I made to update this floral were to use a paint bucket to display the bouquet rather than a pretty vase, and to fragment the table on which the display sat.

This painting feels edgier than my usual work, but I like it.  It`s definitely not my grandmother`s floral bouquet!


Bobbi Dunlop said...

Interesting concept and it appears a successful one! Lovely contemporary floral, Ingrid! - love how the idea began with a favourite colour - and I bet it's stunning when viewed in it's large format!

Ingrid Christensen said...

Thanks, Bobbi!
You're right: it's a concept piece. Funny how we set challenges for ourselves in the studio, isn't it?

Darrell Anderson said...

Brilliant piece. Have you seen the work of Maggie Siner?

Ingrid Christensen said...

thanks, Darrell.
Maggie Siner is one of my favourite painters. She's amazing.