I am a calligrapher, but this work is a photograph I took with a calligraphic sensibility. I dropped ink into a transparent tank of water and allowed it to move of its own accord. Natural and beautiful, it needed no effort from me. It is an example of what I have called Reductionist Calligraphy, i.e., calligraphy reduced to the essential. In former times, transcription was an integral part of calligraphy. Now, we have many more practical means to transcribe text. I let the words go. I wanted to see if calligraphy could do without the words.
Inkfall is representational in that it is a photograph, yet it is abstract in its calligraphy. The word abstract implies existence in thought if not in physical reality. My thoughts about this abstracted a text from this abstract calligraphy. This image challenged the boundaries of Western calligraphy for those who expected letters and human gestures.
I use the term Abstract Conceptualism to categorise a segment of my work that is (metaphorically) calligraphy. However, its text is not written down but is composed in the intellect. It is thus in a state of continual development. Text is implicit. Pretext, subtext, context, and texture may each be involved in work of this kind. Like poetry, it is evocative more than literal. Abstract Conceptual Calligraphy is art with visual and symbolic calligraphic references, where lettering is not involved in the main mark-making; yet where there is a conceptual engagement with text.
LONG-LASTING ARCHIVAL MEDIA
Printed from an Epson SC P800 using Epson’s 9-color UltraChrome ink system at 2880 dpi on Epson acid-free watercolour paper, a combination to ensure long-lasting quality. Wilhelm Imaging Research (www.wilhelm-research.com) suggest prints using this combination of ink and media will last for over 90 years without appreciable fading, based on indoor display framed under glass. Dark Storage Stability Rating at 73°F/50%RH is indicated to last more than 200 years. Detail is super fine at this resolution, almost ten times better than commercial printing so that even under a magnifying glass, prints hold up to scrutiny.
The video below tells more of what I call Abstract Conceptualism in my work.