Thinking around concluding a painting/paintings

The painting and I are bound together by what feels like a kind of covenant bound in with the (picto)poietic act of making, in which we both progress together. For any of it there has to have been an initial impetus which set the work in motion. That was the living me, something which has philosophical significance. Imbued with thinking of this nature the painting is made up of numerous passages, cells of paint each and all contributing to the whole, keeping it alive, as I see it; its adaptive system homeostatic having been transferred from my living self from the start. This seems to me to be something to hold true to, and it seems to work in terms of the emergent work.  After all, the world is perhaps best understood from the bodily perspective.

The painting as it forms is a metaphor for that relationship continuously revitalised throughout. In today’s digital age that relationship is under review variously.  I see the digital as a most marvellous tool and testament to human ingenuity but computers are not in themselves intelligent things. AI seems to be a misleading term as it implies computers are or can be intelligent entities. Real intelligence requires us to be alive and to know for sure that we are, and all that this implies.

Going with this idea is how I progress in a painting, keeping things open and unlabelled, taking care to leave out that which does not belong. The conclusion of a painting is the hardest part as it implies a contradiction; it can no longer remain open in the way that it was when it was in active formation. But this is the time when all that which it could have otherwise been… all that negative capability meets its positive counterpart. The painting exists as it is and it is for me to recognise what it is meant to be, at least from my perspective. I need to title it too, as untitled doesn’t work for me. But to title it in such a way as to not mistake it for something which it is not is problematic. I have to also remind myself that I can, and sometimes do continue a painting, altering its conclusion if I perceive later on that it was not taken far enough. None of this is at all easy but has to be worked through never the less.

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