Scholarship painting exemplars - 2018

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Outstanding Scholarship

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Panel 1 (JPG, 455KB)

Panel 2 (JPG, 481KB)

Panel 3 (JPG, 451KB)

Entire Folio (JPG, 1.3MB)

Sample Workbook pages

Sample page 1 (JPG, 1.1MB)

Sample page 2 (JPG, 1.2MB)

Sample page 3 (JPG, 950KB)

Sample page 4 (JPG, 912KB)

Sample page 5 (JPG, 911KB)

Sample page 6 (JPG, 971KB)

Sample page 7 (JPG, 919KB)

Sample page 8 (JPG, 975KB)

This Outstanding Scholarship Painting submission demonstrated from the outset the candidate's intention to position abstraction as its primary mode of operation and conceptual impetus. Alongside this high entry point and clear focus, an interest in aesthetics and formalist visual language led the inquiry via a series of experimental image making and innovative application.

In the workbook, the candidate claims a desire to create work that is minimalist and bold, in order that viewer engagement and subsequent 'reading of the work/s'; can be open-ended. They do this by creating imagery and compositions that draw upon established methods of abstraction, such as formal conventions of the grid, line, tone, flat colour, discordant colour, texture, cut-outs, scale difference, perspective, and trompe l'oeil.

A strength of this proposition was the use of digital drawing to determine the nature of composition and also rendering, as in the depiction of brushstroke, gesture and layers. Here, the gestural marks refer directly to the ‘swiping' on the screen. The iPad and the app Procreate are both productively employed to search out possible compositions and, most importantly, to capture a live and active set of relations upon the painted surface. The surfaces and composition of the folio work are highly developed and well-crafted throughout the entire inquiry.

In the workbook, the candidate's thinking-through-practice is clearly outlined and explored. They speak of successes and pitfalls related to how they made decisions to move forward / shift their thinking, based on conceptual implications for and within the work. Throughout the folio, they smoothly transition their ideas by working with consistent conceptual themes, such as the edge, the frame, the cut-out, and the object. These are dealt with systematically thus affirming the dexterity and conceptual thinking at play. Artist reference is informed and relevant with well-chosen artist works, such as Cornelia Baltes’ Ding Bats, James Kudo's Unknown, Sarah Cain’s love seat for insights into three-dimensional painting strategies and tactics (panel three). In this instance, the candidate evidences how they are working to their purposes, drawing on an artistic neighbourhood that informs their own thinking.


(click icon images to see a large version in a new window)

Panel 1 (JPG, 621KB)

Panel 2 (JPG, 613KB)

Panel 3 (JPG, 658KB)

Entire Folio (JPG, 1.8MB)

Sample Workbook pages

Sample page 1 (JPG, 889KB)

Sample page 2 (JPG, 889KB)

Sample page 3 (JPG, 1.3MB)

Sample page 4 (JPG, 1.3MB)

Sample page 5 (JPG, 1.1MB)

Sample page 6 (JPG, 1.1MB)

Sample page 7 (JPG, 970KB)

Sample page 8 (JPG, 1.2MB)

This Scholarship Painting submission has as its subject matter the idea of 'seeing a city through new eyes'. The candidate takes the fact that they are a foreigner to the city of Auckland as their topic and turns it into a proposition and tool for seeing. In the workbook, they discuss how architecture can operate as a landmark and signpost of a city's character. This idea was further developed into an analysis of the relationship between architecture and landscape and a series of questions about inorganic and organic relations – of architecture taking over the natural environment in an urban setting.

The painting inquiry follows a systematic and logical progression through a range of media to explore the city and urban spaces. The combined use of different paint media, such as watercolour, gouache, paint and graphics pens, works to impress different feelings and understandings of the environments being depicted, including soft modelling, fluid and liquid, painting scumbling and textures to reflect nature. Hard angles refer to the spatial and human-made structures.

Subtle interplays between abstraction and figuration start to complicate compositions. There is subtlety to the works that combine, overlap and feature motifs of leaf / sky / streams on the surfaces of buildings. The move into abstraction on panel three parallels the candidate's literal merging of architecture into the landscape, and vice versa – where there appears to now be cohabitation between organic and inorganic forms. This development is reinforced by the shift from vertical to landscape compositions, asserting a less monumental and more integrated reading of the imagery and space depicted.

Compositions are treated playfully throughout the inquiry via a range of viewpoints, from realistic to deliberate distortions creating innovative compositional structures. As well, the flattening out of colour and surface with less pictorial focus and more layering and juxtaposing of shape, form and colour. Discussion in the workbook suggests strong analysis of media to concept relations with media strategies being employed to create the narrative of the candidate's seeing. There is a thoughtful undercurrent present in the folio work that is communicated by considered decision-making and applied technical fluency in the paintings.

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