Here are some pieces by one of my favorite artists, South African born Marlene Dumas. I just happened to catch her first exhibition in the States, at the MOMA in New York, the Winter of ’09 and was blown away. Her simple palette and brush strokes carry so much power. I loved her colors which were bold in her oil paintings and then soft in her watercolor portraits. Initially, I am magnetized to colors when I look at paintings and seeing her work in person was like a lesson in color combinations for me. But it’s her slightly off colors and sometimes twisted images that really intrigue me, and continue to pull me into her work.
Images via Google.
Last year, Marlene Dumas put on a show in New York at the Museum of Modern Art called “Measuring Your Own Grave.” After reading about the South African painter and seeing some samples of her work, I had to go and see her work in person.
When I walked into the first room of the exhibit, I was immediately taken. Her color choices are brilliant. Each piece has a small pallet, some with only one or two colors, and are painted very simply. But it is not just her color choices or the subject, it is that Marlene Dumas has that certain something special. “Measuring Your Own Grave” featured subjects that most people would view as ugly: prostitutes, creepy children and dead bodies. Yet as I walked around the gallery, Dumas made me look at these people differently through her work, and as I did so, all I could see were beautiful pieces of art.
For more information on “Measuring Your Own Grave”: http://www.moma.org/visit/calendar/exhibitions/34