A bee becomes a bird becomes a fish…
The work of MC Escher always provokes amazement and wonder. How did he do that? How did he accomplish his transformations with such incredible detail? What cerebral mix of mathematical and artistic interest works out over and over the intricacies of perception, perspective and transformation?
DeLand’s Museum of Art is currently hosting a wonderful collection of Escher’s prints. Some are lithographs. Most are woodcuts. All are exquisitely detailed and planned. After leaving the exhibition, I called the images to mind, remembering the patterns and images that most stuck with me.
His use of color is especially intriguing. Many of the works are black and white. And many appear to be black and white but actually have a very subtle hint of color imprinted from a second block or a second press hit. Such beautiful greys! I found myself in my studio looking at my color wheel, finding the greys and thinking about how enriching they are.
And the simple idea of transformation. There is nothing simple about the execution – they are breathtaking in their detail. But the concept is simple and compelling. One thing becomes another. Then it may change back into what it was. Or it may become a new thing.
To artmakers, this is a studio reality. One process leads to another, which may open up a new door, or may lead on a path back to the original way of working. Things change. Ways of working change. How interesting, how interwoven it is.