Improvised paintings for Shaun Caton’s Prehistoric School of Barbaric Painting – Task No.001

Part of Shaun’s task was to do with shutting off ones conscious decision making process when making paintings and to work in a more intuitive way. Having completed the first and second parts of the task which involved large compositions on cardboard with acrylic and emulsion, we wanted to do a couple of additional smaller paintings in oil. Informally we called these ‘Jazz paintings’ but what they are really is improvised compositions i.e. we allow them to have a life of their own: we apply paint and see what motifs present themselves.. We started with two canvases of the same size so that we could both work at the same time, set an alarm and painted for 20 minutes, then swapped over and worked on the other

one for 20 minutes and so on. Also we wanted to go with the flow and allow the images to unfold in front of us without judging ourselves or the other person too harshly. Sometimes its hard to fully understand what’s being attempted by someone else and the temptation is to change it in some way or completely obliterate it. It’s an exercise in trust and a commitment to the collaborative process.

Improvised painting No.1 Oil on canvas. Sep 2107
Improvised painting No.2 Oil on canvas. Sep 2107