Tempera on paper on board
18,8 x 14,8 cm (7 1/8 x 5 1/2 in) (image)
35,2 x 31,1 x 3 cm (13 3/4 x 12 1/4 x 1 1/8 in) (framed)
The work is from a new body of work exploring images from the artist’s image archive, among them decades old snapshots associated with personal memories, tied to a specific place, a moment in time. Andrew Grassie chose motifs that had held his attention for reasons he could not always explain: photos from his image archive, sometimes many decades old and exuding a vague awkwardness, became sources for these works.
Each image of this series can be traced to a specific moment, often specific visual phenomena, remembered by the artist for personal and/or artistic reasons.
In the words of Andrew Grassie:
“Thinking more about the series as a film, I thought it might be an idea to imply some sort of character. I had this and other photos of people disappearing out of frame at art fairs. This one was so simple and geometric. The blank canvas by [the British Minimalist artist] Bob Law slightly reflects the woman like some black mirror. The crop was perfect and the geometry hit all the corners. At this stage, I had no idea that I might paint another image of this scene, which I’d go on to complete a year later.”
The intimately scaled, precisely painted work is executed in tempera, a painting technique associated with pre-Renaissance panel paintings anteceding the development of oil paint.
Part of the conceptual premise of transforming fleeting memories captured by photographic snapshots, into unique work of art executed with a time and labor intensive traditional technique, Grassie painted this motif once with the figure and once without.