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Reflections now and then

Abstract Representations

No wonder serious painters have no time to fight silly terms like "representational art." As if there could be non-representational art too! As if painters (let me restrict this to painting only, scribes have already made the simple word ART too complicated) could really pop brand new things out of their minds! Create things that never existed before! Not even in a recombined, rearranged form! If the "THING IN ITSELF" or the origin of all 'things' was so easy to find, let alone depict on a canvas, philosophers through the centuries wouldnt have had reason to lose their hair.

The only thing we can possibly do uniquely is rearrange. Like I am doing right now with the english alphabet. Rearranging alphabets to put across an idea. Every portrait painted till date is a rearrangement. Every dash or dot ever painted by Kandinsky are examples of rearrangement. Can we create new colors? Can we circumvent nature? Can we paint a shade of blue that our retina will never register? We are 'trapped' by nature, we cannot escape her. (I dont mind this cage though!). We ARE it - The Nature! Our thoughts, our emotions, our consciousness - is nature. Our sense organs help experience each other into being. What are we without our senses? Dead, of course!

Our moods - elation, depression, lust are nothing but a constant game of re-re-re-re-....representaion on the canvas of our psyches. Can we have a thought other than that gathered by our senses and processed by the filter of our minds? Will a person, congenitally visually-impaired ever associate a red canvas with blood? Or feel suitably horrified? He, of course will understand that the 'word' red ought to ring alarm bells somewhere deep inside. But that again is by association, by learning that the warm sticky fluid gushing out of a painful wound somehow finds representation in the word "red." See, again that dirty word, representation! And we thought displaying white or black canvasses would be non-representational.

If someone says that abstract art is that which do not depict a physically recognizable object, and hence, is non-representational, I do not know who is being the fool here! Show me a Pollock and we can conveniently find a multitude of things by which to bind it to nature. A white canvas is representaional! It represents a natural phenomenon, an optical behaviour. The law of nature is to clone, yet keep subtle differences between each in an ever observant attempt to find a better form. Look how traditional nature is! How many generations seperate a prehistoric fish and us proud homo sapiens? Yet, we still have that bilateral basis to our design(two eyes, vertebra down the middle etc). Nature is ever so patient, mercilessly punishing bad mutations (some people will call these "originals"). Only those mutations which have displayed stable adaptations were incorporated into that great evolutionay chain. The Dodos, on the other hand have died mirthless deaths.


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