Staring at art from the Tate's collection and thinking about it

Monday, 11 March 2013

#7 - Sean Scully

Sean Scully, #7, 1992, aquatint on paper, 312 x 260mm, Tate.















Scully at his most Rothko.  While obviously alluding to the Abstract Expressionist's 'windows', the human brain's innate desire to read facial imagery into pure shapes kicks in (I admit, I am thinking of Kang and Kodos from The Simpsons here), and so this is another work from the Heart of Darkness series that suggests a presence rather than a place.  It's an act of some mental effort to read it as a location, and even more of one to think in terms of pure abstract forms.  Maybe it/s a mistake to give into a figurative reading so easily, but the work does have an eerie totemic presence that I just can't shake.  Is this what looks out at you once you have reached the heart of darkness?

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