On Abstraction

When I was young, I remember a specific trip to the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) in NYC, where I asked my mom in front of a giant abstract Jackson Pollock painting – WHY?  The whole thing was so striking.  Golds and blacks strewn everywhere, in a rhythm that somehow made sense, in spite of its chaos.  I remember the gold, and its incomprehensible “message” stuck with me.  I got no answers that day, but for years I kept the question tucked in a mental corner.  Having studied modern art in college, I felt exposed to some possibilities but still no answer.  When I pursued my own artistic career, I finally began to move closer.  It started to make sense.

Abstraction means something different to everyone, because that’s how it should be.  It’s a cloak of disguise for a message that sometimes the artist doesn’t even know they’re giving.  But they’re compelled. 

To create a work of art is to “abstract" something, in the first place – as true “photographic replication” is impossible – even photographs have their viewpoints and biases.  We’re constantly interpreting reality.  Our hands put their stamp on things.  But a funny thing happens as art becomes less and less representational – it leaves room to be understood.  By a viewer who might need some sort of message that day.  The gaps in the meaning of a work are exactly what is needed for the work to “work.”  I don’t believe that the purpose of art is literally to throw meaning at people.  To me, it’s rather like a crystal clear lake on a sunny day, or a cloudy day.  In it, you find your own reflection.  When an artist speaks their truth, someone else’s truth shines back.

My work has taken an abstract turn lately and I can’t say I mind.  I find that in colors there are emotions, and in brushstrokes there are bents, moods.  I know how the story felt as I created it, but the art seems to transcend all that in some way – to hold the potential for a “greater sum of its parts”.  It’s a great mystery but I’m glad that it speaks to people at times, in ways they seem to like. I know I’ve loved the works of so many artists before me.  For more abstractions, follow me on Instagram - J._Heloise - as I share it haphazardly;)  Here are some recent ones:

 

Plenty of Love by J.Heloise, 2017

Plenty of Love by J.Heloise, 2017

Flowers for Mercury Retrograde, J.Heloise 2017

Flowers for Mercury Retrograde, J.Heloise 2017

Apparent, J.Heloise 2017

Apparent, J.Heloise 2017

Competing Crests by J.Heloise, 2017

Competing Crests by J.Heloise, 2017

Rights by J.Heloise, 2017

Rights by J.Heloise, 2017

Lips don't lie, J.Heloise 2017

Lips don't lie, J.Heloise 2017