Mark Mullin. water finds its way 2009. Mixed media on paper. 30 1/2 x 44 1/4"
Though my work often falls under the assigned genre of non-figuration, I feel the visual vocabulary I employ generates a pictorial narrative dynamic more akin to representational painting than formalist abstraction. My recent paintings and drawings increasingly suggest a fictitious situational event where stylistically varied abstracted forms seem to interact like peculiar characters in an ensemble cast. The works fashion an illusory field of space where varied and diverse instances of paint manipulation propose a type of multi character exchange of non-literal dialogue. Forms that seem to slightly allude to biology, physics, chemistry and/or comic illustration seem to trigger a response from another, which then runs contrary to another, that suddenly silences another, that provokes another.…. What seems to result is a motley visual banter that generates different dramatic sensibilities and the sense of a lurking narrative in play. Some are lyrically comical, some foreboding, some quiet and contemplative and others more similar to a cartoonish farce. Though calculated in their placement and execution, the arrangement of reoccurring forms make little literal sense, yet hopefully possess enough fleeting familiarity to engage the viewer in a game of referential deduction and manipulation. Works balance on the cusp of clarity and purpose to comprise a fictitious device. The paintings present a less controlled space than prior works. What emerges is a transformative environment of painterly cogs and vaporous chemical leaks, all necessary to mechanize these realities that may spring loose at any moment. The works on paper seem to assist as the careful documentation of the painting's peculiar experiment - the outcome now methodically mapped. A rendering of resulting organic forms whose quiet elegance is infiltrated with the cartoonish perversity. This dialectic establishes a state of dramatic tension, as if the paintings and drawings’ situational exchanges are being made and unmade at the same time. Viewers and work alike are lodged within a fictitious devise.
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