“Cud chewing repetitiousness” – I love this quote from Julian Barnes in his book of essays ‘Keeping an eye open’. Julian Barnes is probably referring to the somewhat slack jawed, bovine and just plain unthoughtful art that can be painted by the metre, especially by painters who have become too comfortable in their own artistic practice. He’s referring to the habit of some artists, who, once they have found a magic formula, one that brings sales and recognition, never change or evolve their style again, and basically repeat the same painting over and over.
For truly great painters, this might not be a problem: Lucian Freud, Francis Bacon, Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko all found their metier, stuck with it and achieved greatness. But it can be the death of lesser artists. At the moment pictures of highland cattle (literally chewing the cud) and leaping hares are having a moment, and seem to be in every gallery. Likewise, flow abstracts are everywhere, as are rainy street scenes full of people lofting umbrellas above their heads. Stormy seascapes, pouting fashion models, paint splatter florals abound.
Anyway, must go, I’ve got yet another landscape to paint 😉