Scholarship – 2008Painting Examples of Candidate Work
Scholarship This submission engages in a restrained and purposeful manner throughout its entirety. The candidate has employed consistent strategies and devices to develop a focused and specific premise via a series of formal explorations. Initial studies set up the visual interest; composition, motif, space and properties such as horizontal/ vertical, pattern/ flatness. Articulation of architectural/ pictorial space and motif is a significant component of this study. The overall approach is process-driven, utilising a drawing-based method. The milking shed, as the initial subject matter is quickly unpicked; and discoveries made inform the selection of artistic reference. The candidate has utilised various models to inform their own practice, whilst keeping it original to self. In the workbook the candidate describes explicitly models used and demonstrates lateral extraction of the model and deployment into own decision making. Careful and considered introduction of artistic reference helps to move the work forward at pivotal points. There are strong strategies employed to construct useful frameworks for developing composition, further ideas and the forming of a pictorial vocabulary, ie attaching fairly dominant elements to the frame, analysing how they affect the depth/ space, shifting the emphasis from the edge of the picture back into a layered pictorial space. The introduction of the veil unlocks further visual possibilities and expands the conceptual field. This purposeful tactic is just one of many that demonstrates the candidate’s ability to pick upon visual aspects and devices to shift the work forward. There is a constructive tension between decoration and abstraction that becomes more complex as the work progresses – the painting process helps build imagery, eg flattening of space – creating the candidate’s own vocabulary, supported inherently by considerable understanding of painting conventions, ie. everything is in action simultaneously, flat pictorial vs. spatial depth. The return to figuration usefully concludes the investigation.
Outstanding Scholarship This submission is highly astute, in that it knows what it is about, it lays out a strong proposition immediately on board one and continues to isolate and draw on a number of intelligent and interesting solutions throughout. It is fluent, independent and sophisticated in its disposition. The candidate is completely engaged at all times; testing, trialing, making decisions, editing their own practice. There is a high level of drawing facility employed; ideas are explored, analysed and problem solved through the establishment of a drawn language. The portfolio doesn’t labour at any point; successful and creative artworks are produced and are then built on. The candidate utilises established practices of illustration and painting related to pictorial structure/ space, sequencing (time), format of finished work, technique, conventions of fantasy and New Surrealism. These references are intrinsic to the works and are clearly understood by the candidate. There is clear understanding of how to manipulate the illustration factor, through inside/ outside frames, pop-ups, etc. The works move intelligently between illustration and the structure of the paint. When the candidate moves out of the frame, they do so meaningfully. Subject matter is constructed by the candidate, involving both a photo shoot where they directed their own subject and further innovation through drawing. Narrative is used to drive formal decisions and to inform the pictorial enquiry, for example, a woman as a character in a world, of trees and animals, and a filmic set of relationships that are subject to influences that occur in the world. This allows an interpretative quality to come through, akin to storytelling through the repetition of a central character, emphasising the sequential aspect. The workbook enriches the study. Drawing solves its pictorial problems/ it plans for/ and engages in other possibilities. Drawing is used as a process of invention and discovery and the paintings are a synthesis of this process (drawing is used at times as a kind of doodle implicating ideas of memory and fantasy). There is a real engagement in the act of drawing, the candidate is actively processing – all of which is evidenced strongly in the workbook. There is a strong sense that the workbook is simultaneous, that the workbook and portfolio have a symbiotic relationship, that one is problem solving the other.