Sunday, March 23, 2008

Bohdan Osyczka

Art & Lit writes on Bohdan Osyczka at Sixth & Sixth Gallery in Tuscon. Monica McFawn, in reference to Osyczka's work, offers an insightful characterization of process painting:

The paradox of gestural, expressive methods such as Osyczka’s is that while the end result is Modernist and concerned with formal elements, the method itself is making a conceptual claim. Art, performative painters seem to say, is as elemental and uncontrolled as the path of fire or the rolling in of a storm, and therefore the painter’s duty is to create the conditions for art (paint, gravity, etc) and watch what happens. In life, we try to control or minimize chaos, but in painting, artists like Osyczka preserve (or even encourage) chaos to find the aesthetic power within it. Exactly how that power is emphasized is dependent on the artist’s touches of willed design, and that is where the painting succeeds or fails. Osyczka’s watercolors try for a symbiotic relationship between will and chance, an admirable aim for both life and art.

I like the term "performative painters", and I've always felt this method of formal exploration is deeply conceptual. It's so amazing when someone describes such an experience in words.

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