Layering and Masking

Layering and Masking. Letting go of the need for certainty. Working on something knowing it can and will change, as it emerges over a period of time. We rarely make time for this kind of thing, yet it often helps us think and do things differently.

During a recent two day art meets organisational development workshop in Berlin, we carried out a number of experiments. One of them involved layering and masking, building up and changing a piece of work over several iterations. Each person in the room was given a blank canvas, and encouraged to develop their work in layers over the course of the time we were together.

I chose to be quite orderly in my attempt – first masking out three lines across the canvas, then applying the first layers of paint. I used different tools to get different paint effects, and each time I returned to the artwork, I re-obscured most of the lines, and added more paint. Here are some photos of the work emerging over a 48 hour period.

Stephanie Barnes was a member of this group, and she produced a completely different work using a variety of different tools, including scrapers, bubble wrap, and a rubber comb to apply paint. I love how this artwork changes throughout the process – barely any traces of the original layer remain.

This was a really enjoyable process, I’d recommend it to anyone who wants to experience something emerging and changing over time in an improvisational way.

 

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