Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Art Flashback Wednesday–“Airwave”

Flashback Wednesday : I've decided that each Wednesday morning, I'll feature and earlier work of mine in a post along with a few lines about the artwork's back story.

First up - "Airwave"

“Airwave” circa 2000 - 2005. Acrylic On Canvas, 36" x 36", Private Collector. ©Michael Sprouse All Rights Reserved

I've always had a soft spot for this work because it marked the start of a point in my painting process where I began to incorporate the title of the work as important element of the work itself. Prior to this, I titled most works rather organically based on whatever popped into my head after the work was completed.

The face in this painting was loosely modeled after a still from a WWII era film staring Sylvia Sidney. I can't recall the film, but I was taken with her expression in the still. I recall pondering over what I thought her character may have been doing in the photo.

And that's when suddenly I had a mental image of this woman listening to a broadcast from some underground German resistance radio station.

Just like a scene from one of those great WWII era films about resistance groups, I envisioned her and her team standing in an old battle bruised shed, gathered around a glowing radio intently listening to the crackling broadcast for the latest information and instructions.

I wanted to create an expression on her face of excitement and expectation as if she were listening to the words she had been waiting for. I added the distressed elements of the work to emphasize the underground, clandestine aspects of it all.

And that's how "Airwave" came into being.

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