"Whitewash," original painting, 36" x 48"
The word “whitewash” popped into my consciousness last week. It’s a curious word with a strong visual component. It means to conceal or to cover up. Whitewash is a low-cost white paint used to disguise an otherwise unappealing surface. Whitewash also means to gloss over or cover up a wrong or illegal action.
It kind of has a negative connotation, doesn’t it? I went looking for quotes about whitewash, and this is the only one I found:
Whitewash on the forehead hardens the brain into a state of obstinacy, perhaps. --Charles Dickens
I’m not sure what that even means, but the idea of a white wash covering up something below was intriguing, and I decided to play around with it in a painting.
I started with geometric forms pressed onto unprimed natural canvas and a scrunched taupe background that created interesting creases in the fabric.
Next came layers of complementary blues and greens. I rarely use a brush. I like to make marks using tools that I find at local thrift stores, like spatulas, whisks, muffin tins, ice cube trays, and cups.
And the final layer is the whitewash — white paint pressed onto the canvas to disguise some of the design and accentuate the crevassed surface.
It looks like a whitewashed wall that has been worn down over time, revealing another image underneath.
- 36" x 48" original painting
- repurposed acrylic latex paint on canvas
- gallery wrap canvas, 2 inches deep with painted sides
- signed by the artist on the back
- wired and ready to hang
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