Painting the Pixel

Goodfellow, Paul (2014) Painting the Pixel. [Show/Exhibition]

Image (JPEG) (Photograph of Exhibition showing work 'Untitled: analogue and digital symmetry, 2014' )

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PAINTING THE PIXEL includes the work of nine international artists who are navigating the inherent paradoxes between the computer's immaterial, encoded matrix and the handmade. The exhibition investigates how digital technology is used as a conceptual tool in painting, how the virtual 'non-space' is reconfigured through the material presence of paint, and how the cultural currency of the image has shifted in relation to the phenomenon of the Internet. Curated by Rachel Sharp as part of her practice-led PhD research at Northumbria University.

Artist’s Statement

I am interested in systems and the transgression of systems in art. How rules and methods are used to make decisions in the production of work, and I’m interested in the digital realm as it is an excellent way of organising and experimenting with material and ideas. I am not so much interested in the surface of the pixel, than what you can do with the digital space. I do not see myself as a viewer of the digital, but as an active participant in the digital. I am both drawn to it’s potential, but also see it’s limitations.
I’m also interested in the production of digital work in it’s own terms. Working digitally has possibilities and limitations that are fundamentally different to paint. I like the digital realm as the same idea can be reworked infinitely without huge physical and time expenditure. I particularly like working with interactive and time-based techniques as the non-linear and temporal dimensions of a work can be explored. Two works are included in PAINTING THE PIXEL: Untitled (2013, and Untitled, (Analogue and Digital symmetry), 2014.

Untitled (2013)
I am interested in painting as a way of fixing an idea, (ultimately over the digital), as it is a physical object that exists in the world. I also like painting as a process as there is an inherent jeopardy using the medium, as it can go ‘wrong’. Conversely a digital work can be revised through multiple copies, without the loss of the original, whilst a painting contains all the decisions made by the artist, including the potential loss.

This painting is like using Photoshop without reversing any of the decisions made. So I could not use the ‘undo’ button, or go back through the ‘history’ to an earlier stage where I was happy with the composition. The painting has been made of many layers of paint. It was then sealed, and I started erasing it with white paint, until I felt I could not go any further without completely destroying the painting.

Untitled, (Analogue and Digital symmetry), 2014
This work looks at the iterative process of repeating a simple technique, both physically and digitally. I’m drawn to the paintings of Bernard Frize who develops a specific technique or process to exploit the physical characteristics of a particular paint, brush or surface. He then repeats that process to produce work that feels direct and open in terms of their production.

Likewise with this work a simple technique was employed to create symmetry using both paint and digitally created objects. I am interested in the difference between the two mediums in terms of both production and reception. The paint shows each iteration of the technique individually, laid out as a grid. Whilst the digital version is viewed as a sequence of iterations, viewed over time, as 25 frames a second.

Digital work, and most screen based work such as film will inevitably prescribe how the viewer receives the work, either in temporal terms, such as pace, or framing terms, such as composition. It can be argued that pace and composition of an abstract painting is revealed to the artists through the production of a works, as much as they are to the viewer. In that sense the abstract painter is willingly displaced as the author. This is something that is very difficult to achieve in the digital realm, and something I am working towards. Consequently the digital version has no compositional dimension to the work. Whereas the painted work, has a secondary compositional dimension to the work through the arrangement of the individual iterations. The overall work should be seen as a unified installation consisting of the physical and digital.

Paul Goodfellow, March, 2014

Item Type: Show/Exhibition
Subjects: W100 Fine Art
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Design
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Paul Goodfellow
Date Deposited: 05 Mar 2015 11:13
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2017 08:17

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