Full moon calling
Beyond the wall
Beyond the wall describes a free space where we are left with our imaginings. The walls around us, some self-imposed, some societal and politely, limit us. The walls are guardians of preconception, assumption, education, fashion, etc that we live with. When we approach these walls and wonder why we feel limited by them, we can make choices, psychologically I mean. I make my way beyond the walls, seeking a creative encounter with life, in the light or in the dark.
“Because of the almost figurative representations of sticks and large blocks of colour, It was as if I could grasp a subject. However this perception was false; I fell into ambiguity and nuance quickly when trying to assign figure and structure. The music came through.
I find this to be a wonderful metaphor for my experience in Cape Town. The more I learn the less I understand. Yet with that, there seems to be a lack of nuance in Cape Town . Actions and intentions are assumed according to the racial and gender category generalization. This is unfortunate as I think Spaces of nuance and ambiguity are seedbeds for imagination, change and healing. And because of this, Jill’s work embodies a nuance and ambiguity through mark making and colour that is meaningful.”
small keyboard, big thumbs
Notes from the Rolex weekend at the Baxter theatre Cape Town, February 2020.
There are clues and tips and mostly keys that opened new avenues of thought and clarified many questions about the culture landscape.
“spring, after the rain” | Acrylic on canvas
Photographing this body of work reminded me again how much movement is lost in photographing my paintings. I work to make the surface move, this is lost in the photographic image. Therefore, this is simply a documentation of the work and not an experience of the paintings.
The notes below have been given to me from friends; they are informed by interactions that we had during my exhibition at Gallery South in Muizenberg. (February to May 2019.)
Some the actual conversations have been transcribed by Claudia Braude and are on the Gallery South website. www.gallerysouth.co.za
Various | Oil on Canvas
Cats Cradle | Oil on Canvas | 120 x 150 cm
Half Time | Oil on Canvas | 600 x 700 cm
AVA gallery | Oil on paper | 18th to 28th January 2018 | Familiar places x 8 | 2012 | 77.5 x 53 cm
In November 2012 Trappler exhibited 8 large (175 x 270 cm) canvases at Knysna fine art. These were extraordinary still, beautiful images emphasizing her skill with the visceral, vibrancy of colour and the hovering of embedded line. The 8 oil paintings on paper now at the AVA were made at the same time as these large works. Recently Trappler has been working with a similar exuberance, libido and liveliness with oil on large canvases which relates back to the smaller work made five years ago. This is the way that her work unfolds through time, finding threads and rhythms that revisit, resurface and explore fresh yet familiar locations.
The abstract painter often has to endure, among other suspicions, the coupled questions, “what is it?” and “what does it mean?” Most of us shy away from answering these questions directly because they are simply the wrong questions and should never, in any event, be directed at the painter. The task of the abstract painter, as I see it, is not communication. It is rather to create a space for communion as in “feel this presence and participate in it.” This is cerebral and sensuous. Cerebral in the sense that decisions taken in the making can be seen and read and sensuous in the sense that the painter’s flavours are evident and exposed. As in Jill’s case:
A bustle of wee eddies | A clutch of tiny turmoils | The scent of rose and lavender.
“I paint large pictures because I want to create a state of intimacy. A large picture is an immediate transaction; it takes you into it.” (Mark Rothko)
For Jill Trappler an invitation by Trent Read to create and exhibit eight paintings, approximately two metres by three, in his Knysna gallery, stimulated new ideas and different approaches.
Much changed, while at the same time echoes of her large paintings of 2009, entitled ‘moments of being’, linger – the dominance of a single colour in each work and the relatively thin layers of paint, the water-based pigment now applied with greater looseness and a sense of freedom; the years of experience that reside in Trappler’s hands and the concomitant awareness of formal elements, such as scale, colour, shape and equilibrium….
Complete essay by Marilyn Martin.
Working notes from Jill Trappler’s journal