Artsy Shark presents the vivid, energetic portfolio of British abstract artist Marc Lawrence. Learn more about Marc’s work by visiting his website.
What are You Working On?
Colour is my key to the door of an Aladdin’s cave. When I treat colour effectively, it’s like revealing a treasure trove of exciting and unexpected things in a secret place. The art of painting colours on top of and adjacent to each other to me, lends an artwork a particular depth of feeling unobtainable in other mediums.
I’m currently working on a series of abstract paintings where my use of colour is less thick than normal. Using acrylics gives me the option of laying colour with varying degrees of viscosity which can yield markedly different results. The thinner the layer then the more transparent the paint will be, which in turn alters the colour and feel of the underlying layer.
Consequently I have found that I use less effort in physically scraping back layers of dried paint using sand paper, a technique I have come to appreciate that allows a unique look and feel to the canvas surface. This then allows me more time for colour consideration and mark-making. Although this latest process is less labour intensive, the overall result of this technique reflects the energy and spontaneity of a chemical reaction.
These new explorations in colour challenge an inherent resistance I had to using colours unhindered. It has been a liberating performance and experience for me and I view these new paintings as each having a life and character of their own.
What Inspires You?
US artists Robert Rauschenberg and Mark Rothko and UK artists Howard Hodgkin and Patrick Heron have all produced work that amazes me. Their use of colour is markedly different but they each have a clear fascination with how it can be manipulated in order to convey emotion.
The location of my studio at the foot of the North Downs, South East England serves as a huge motivation and I can create highly charged works here. So, to simply reproduce a scene would be to do it no justice at all.
The amazing thing about abstract art is that it’s incredibly accessible. You don’t need a degree to appreciate something that uplifts, saddens or makes you want to look harder. British artist Brian Clarke sums up his motivation with stunning simplicity:
‘So long as I remember the power of liberating oneself through imagination and through the subjective interpretation of the world I feel I can go anywhere.’ Brian Clarke
What Are Your Goals?
In the near future my paintings will include imagery produced by silk screen printing directly onto the canvas. I’ve built my own screen printing studio in my garage and I’m keen to combine these two disciplines. My older screen prints portray a contemporary, urban and edgy style and this is a look which will soon inhabit my canvases. Transparency and colour can be manipulated in different ways through printing and it is these relationships that fascinate me with my art and is an obsession that I can see myself pursue vigorously for a long time yet.
Developing productive relationships with clients is a skill set I’ve recently learned to appreciate. Selling is not just a one stop shop, if someone admires your work then as an artist you should understand why in order to provide your audience with more product without selling out. Learning the business side of being an artist is just as important to me so I thank Carolyn at Artsy Shark for the unending advice and guidance.