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Resistance of the Canvas

How or why do we choose to risk legitimacy or our Painting medium's insight and knowledge?  By acknowledging that our medium is error-ridden, but also capable of 'happy-accidents too!  There will always be a modernist graveyard of wrong decisions, failed distractions, failed contributions that are over-indulgent etc, even decades of slow-roll disappointment, but never let us not take risks...even if it be because Painters are not encouraged to take risks today!!


Our fate lies in our decision to risk it all in a metaphysical application of Paint, which is also an existential high-wire act of visual free speech careering close to danger but never pre-ordained. We must expect to never finish or complete the perfect Painting or counterbalance the high-wire knowing that there is no safety-net, whilst also accepting that our precarious position is of value, if not to ourselves but to others!  It is so tantalising that one false brush stroke and we may have lost the very essence of what the individual Painting is out to accomplish! 


Of course we must embrace the fact that modernism and Painting have a failed history because the world in the 19th century's modernism and 20th century's modernism was preparing to catapult itself through the traumas of global war, post Imperialism, post industrialism as well as the extremes of Fascism and dictatorship that locked-in Marxist-Leninism, and delayed its collapse Modernism frankly failed to impact most of the globe, but it may actually form the very backbone of ex-colonial, now superpower 21* century big players, who may well advocate a type of BRICS version of modernism beyond the control of the west? A non-Western global trailblazer engulfed in departure rather than stasis, where non Western criteria Is not celebrated by the combination of ancient cultures like neighbours China and India, who may re-orientate cultural Painting as a reminder to the ex-imperial Europe that whilst western modernist Painting has been a graveyard, anew modernism based upon Indian and Chinese criteria may actually neglect or share its wonders to ex-colonial Europe.


But who is to say whether our own post-Renaissance tradition of Painting may actually fuse the with 21st century Britain (it may just sustain a Painting stylized modernism only and include only the Medium) measured by the army of enthusiast of Practitioners fearless and ready to explore like never before?  But who is to say that Painters have to countenance Art elite judgementalism?  Indeed, many may feel liberated by knowing that they are Painting without the cultural approval.  Who is to say that we will not all may benefit from our 'aggregated modernism' that remains independent from any authority, who provides an incentive to warm to the health of the medium if it is being obstructed and criticized by the Art Top Table'?  Surely that is the very definition of successful Art practice....  resistance to being told what to do? 


So, are we the generation of Painters (just like our modernist 'founding fathers') who reach-out to base-camp of post and pre–Cold War 'reconstructive criticism' without the controversy over ‘Structuralism’ etc? Criticism, satire, observation, and the free visual speech are all up for grabs based upon free (or more disciplined) verse?  Why not overrule limitation of external tech or digitalised intervention too?  Being prepared for fashionable pendulemic swings of interest or the opposite is how we have learnt from the 20th century off modernist Painting - why not apply that experience?  Afterall, we also are familiar with conflict, war, Soviet breakdown, nuclear deterrent etc in a way that we had no experience or interest when Modernist 20th century broke through our natural national reflex of suspicion after Parisian circles that had been mobilised to run global Art since the19th century, and though we cannot promise to Painters today a safe-passage, we can offer an alchemy that's fraught with danger even when we mix paints, let alone when we apply them to resistant canvas that defies wet Paint by changing its state, and when it dries becomes a defiance of gravity. Why embrace the spread of wet paint on canvas....  because all possibilities are open because the dirt under one small step' grounds us.


We recall the evil and cruelty from the ashes from Auschwitz, the human remains of the Holodomor of Ukraine, the inhumanity of ideological extremism, the terrorism of our era, the lies and powerful technology or our times, the acceleration of Climate change and yet we vacated and pulled ourselves out of anti-human brutality and a downward spiral and we have survived.....and now we can tell our own story in a visual combinations of free speech and resilience that may have to stylized because we can't actually replicate without the need to dramatize, to envelop all from another human nadir to emerge from the bunkers, which is a reality for all Ukrainians every time Putin sends his violent territorialism in someone else’s backyard! Perhaps Gaza and Ukraine need us to tell the world beyond a heart aching photograph how they endure, how they resolve and how they carry-on!  We have lost collective faith on levels (including Painting) recently, even though a fight for it goes on, but we must never lose faith again in its ability to self-transform, and although we may disregard it or write-it-off for any reason we must stay loyal and continue to work for a better future that we in blighty all can Paint towards, because we owe it to Gazans and Ukrainians because they can't.  Painting seems so remote, even a luxury….  So, we should make it an act of support, even if we know that the risk of Painting an image may mean nothing to them!  But that is the risk that we should take and defend!


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