Like a Flower
Department of Art after 1800
|Medium, technique||oil on paper|
50 x 64 cm
|Collection||Department of Art after 1800|
|On view||This artwork is not on display|
Jon Groom began as a sculptor, and since he took to painting, the differences between painting and sculpture have been the constant theme of his works. In 1981-82, he made a series of pictures with closely similar motifs constructed from purely geometrical colour beams. The final versions of the pictures were preceded by scores of smaller models. On these paper studies, he tested his typically asymmetrical constructions based on cross rhythm, using various colour hues, angles and colour harmonies. His colours are always restrained, earth colours, mainly ochres and sienna reds, confining the units to closed compact forms. For Groom, the physical properties of the pictures are of basic importance, that is why he uses oil on his smaller paper works. He is intrigued by the accentuated surface, the texture of the subtle transitions and superpositions. His works display features of painting and sculpture at the same time, by suggesting mass and object-like qualities despite the flat surface.
Underlying each seemingly purely abstract painting, one can find a motive derived from real experience, the retrieval of some memory from the subconscious, considerably modified and changed in the creative process. The 1981-82 series of similar motifs is the synthesis of the spiritual experience of the perception of a given space via light, inspired by Albert Camus’s essay The Moorish House. Groom is absorbed by the linking of the material and the immaterial. Despite the emphatic physical properties of paint applied in layers to suggest depth and density, he wishes to give a picture a transcendental quality by the simplicity and balance of forming, the saturation and expressiveness of the colours.
This record is subject to revision due to ongoing research.