Abstract art is defined by suggestion of the natural or real versus the concrete, indexical perception of absolute depiction found in realism. In understanding these precepts the reader of this review will gain insight into how the writers assess the various viewpoints presented by opticality and perception from the artist, viewer, and critic in finding meaning in the work of an abstract painting.
Opticality, how to view a work of art, can take the intellectual approach or take the form of a psychological game, sometimes perpetrated by the artist, as an optical illusion to be solved and other times to be used by writers through an intellectual approach in resolving the hidden meaning of the abstract painting. Manuel Felguerez is a Mexican artist who was born in Zacatecas, Mexico. He moved to Mexico City to study sculpture at the Academia de San Carlos and La Esmeralda School of Art. He began exhibiting in the early 1950s in Paris and Mexico City and continues to exhibit worldwide today.Order now
The work of Manuel Felguerez covers a vast space in the Mexican plastic reality. It is also one of the most powerful examples of the will to remain faithful to the authentic demands of art without closing the current moment, but also by opposing the truth of the artist when deemed necessary. Abstract painter and sculptor since his early works, he realizes his intimate and personal relationship with form. Felguerez always explored the endless possibilities of the means of expression themselves. Felguerez is a rational artist, analytical and self-appraising, geometric, organize, and order, logic, system of possibilities.
In more ways than one, Felguerez might be easily taken for a professor. The formation of Felguerez style was influenced by the abstract expressionism which he was exposed to in his early training. His works contains geometric figures most of the time, such as circles, triangles, squares which he combines with his own language. Manuel Felguerez has had many influences but he does not follow any one specifically. We have seen the presence of Zadkine, his first teacher in his sculptures, and later the one from Moore.
At some time of his painting, the violent seduction of Kooning has appeared, but all influences have been assimilated and transformed into constant exercise of his creative freedom. The painting Entre Dos Almas its an oil on canvas made by Manuel Felguerez on 1992, it is located in the San Antonio Museum of Art in the city of San Antonio, Texas. It is placed in the Latin-American artists section with a quote of Felguerez that says: Every plane contains potentially infinite volumes. Opt for one, and create a relief; color will also assume dimension.
Then take the volume and develop it in space, demonstrate that the concept painting-relief-sculpture is obsolete, exhausted, that form-color is one within relative spaces. Entre dos almas is typical of many of Felguerezs paintings form the 1990s in which he explores composition in two dimensions. His paintings include lyrical explorations of curved organic forms juxtaposed with geometrical elements. The cool metallic gray background of his work is reminiscent of the high technology and computer elements which influenced Manuel Felguerezs work in the late 1970s.
Felguerezs paintings are closely related to many of his sculptural reliefs. As we can see, nothing in this painting is recognizable; there are no fruits, landscapes or people. In some cases the painting is pleasant to the eye and sometimes it is not. The painting has a flat two-dimensional-space area. It has a lot of curved lines and it has a few straight lines; I touched the surface of the painting by myself and I could notice that the texture of the painting is thick and rough, as we can perceive that the painting has this kind of texture when we look at it.
The purpose of the unity in a painting is to create a sense of harmony and wholeness, by using similar elements and the purpose of the variety is to use contrasting elements within the composition, which we can clearly see in this painting; the unity used here is that the objects have the same color while the variety is the use of different sizes and shapes. The principal colors Manuel Felguerez used in this painting are metallic grey, orange and white, the other ones are a mixture of these three. The balance of this painting is asymmetrical because it is abstract art so all the elements are placed unevenly.
The painting has asymmetrical symmetry because one side of the painting has mostly metallic grey and orange and the other one has white and orange. That might be why he called this painting Entre dos almas. Felguerez might want to say with this painting that everyone has two sides, the good side and the bad side that are always fighting. Most of the time the good side of the people wins that is the reason why we can see the white color trying to overcome the blackness of the other side of the painting.
But while doing this it is obvious that we as human beings have our failures and sometimes we do not do the right thing, which might be the purpose of the black part in the white side of the painting. But that is how I interpret this work of art, it does not have to mean that, everyone can see it in a different way, as we can read above Felguerez did this painting influenced by the technology at that time. His work is a confirmation that he does not ignore the demands imposed on the time, but on the contrary, he faces them directly.
1. Lanigan, Linda B. “How to Get Meaning from Abstract Painting.” How to Get Meaning from Abstract Painting: As Interpreted by the Artist, the Viewer, and the Writer (2012): n. web. 2012.
2. Peden, Margaret Sayers. Out of the Volcano: Portraits of Contemporary Mexican Artists. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1991. Print.
3. Ponce, Juan. Nueve Pintores Mexicanos. [1. ed. Me?xico: Ediciones Era, 1968. Print.
4. Entre Dos Almas. San Antonio Museum of Art. 200 W Jones Ave, San Antonio, TX 78215. November 27th, 2014.