Bailin Studio

He left a paper trail…
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Observations on art and art process. Your comments are welcome and encouraged.

Bailin Painting 1973

The Anxiety of Style

Field Painting with Self Portrait

Field Painting, oil and shoes on canvas with shoeless artist, 6' x 6', 1974

Another way that the anxiety of style is handled in student work is through synthesis and hybridization. In the following painting, I combined the rough edged matte-knife strokes of Clifford Still with the lyrical abstract paintings of Philip Guston. The anxiety is apparent in the scratchy, nervous and agitated painting surface created by using my fingers to apply the paint and made all the more so by deliberately and self-consciously dumbing down the subject matter into child-like diagrammatic imagery.
White Painting 1973

First Meeting, oil on canvas, 6' x 9', 1976

Whether the work was successful, it does contain my subsequent interest in humor and narrative.

Style can't be forced even by the most competitive art student. And with what style mature artists end up can't be justified or avoided. To paraphrase the rhetorical and wonderfully post-modernist riddle posed by that old BLACKGLAMA ad campaign: What becomes a style most? Insert your work here.
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