When I Was Ten, 2008 - James Siena
About the Work
About When I Was Ten
Both editions feature imagery that the artist has explored earlier in his life and career. Floppy Combs, derived from a motif that first appeared in 1983, has been explored most recently in drawings and as a wood engraving. When I Was Ten dates back to a drawing creating during Siena's childhood. Now lost, the drawing featured perpendicular, rounded, and continuous shapes. The young artist recalls saying to himself: "I'm going to do this again when I grow up."
In order to bring these drawings to life in paper, Siena scribed his two images in clay slabs, from which a rubber mold was made. Black cotton pulp was cast into the molds by hand, and attached to a backing sheet of high-shrinkage fiber (white linen rag pulp for Floppy Combs and a persimmon colored abaca sheet for When I Was Ten). The pieces were dried slowly to enhance the shrinkage and buckling of the sheets as the two different fibers pulled against each other.
Courtesy of Dieu DonneÌRead Less
About the Artist
About James Siena
One of the most famous living abstract artists, James Siena is best known for the intricate geometric abstractions that he creates freehand by imposing upon ...Read More
One of the most famous living abstract artists, James Siena is best known for the intricate geometric abstractions that he creates freehand by imposing upon himself a set of "rules" that he calls "visual algorithms." Beginning with a basic unit—a shape or a set of lines—he allows these algorithms, which are essentially predetermined permutations, to guide the progression of each work. The resulting drawing or painting is a pattern that is not only visually complex, but also logical and formulaic. "They're procedures," Siena says of the rules governing his paintings. "Each painting has to do with carrying out a procedure, no matter how simple. It's the task of making it physical." Though rigorously executed and highly procedural, Siena's abstract compositions transcend geometry, producing psychological, and some might even say meditative or spiritual, effects.Read Less
DescriptionCast cotton on pigmented abaca base sheet.
AuthenticationInitialed by the artist on recto. Signed and dated by the artist on verso.
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