(by the artist)
Mark Ewenson

Painting is not dead; it is still developing all the time.

- Mark Ewenson (2009)

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"Since the early 1980's, Mark has produced a large body of work, ranging from landscape to figure to still life to semi-abstact. Since 1991 he has had 13 solo exhibitions, as well as many group shows in Melbourne, Gippsland and abroad. He has developed an original style of expressionism, combining traditional and mixed media. Mark has been represented by many commercial and public galleries and has works in private and public collections throughout Australia and overseas."

I am inspired by Carl Jung’s observation’s that: ‘Artists are driven by the desire to unlock the divine secret that sleeps in matter.’ This for me, and probably many other artists, sums up the central rationale for painting. I have always liked to keep my subject matter simple so as to allow this ‘divine secret’, ‘essence’ or ‘spirit’ to appear. Over the past 20 years I have developed a method of mixed media collage which has greatly broadened my range of expression. Using combinations of fabric, photography, paper, paints and other drawing material, along with found objects, allows me to ‘sculpt’ a painting, and it can sometimes remain semi abstract/surreal. I love the glimpses of other ‘dimensions’, ‘associations and possibilities which collage allows within a traditional format. This then informs a pastel, pencil or oil painting.

In my view, painting is not dead (a belief that has been circulating since about the mid-twentieth century). Rather it is ever growing, expanding, developing. Far from everything having ‘been done already’, since painting was ‘set free’ with Cubism and Abstraction nearly 100 years ago there has been an amazing rebirth, rather than an ending. Each new generation of artists adds subtlety, refinement and beauty, as well as being better equipped, with a greater range and higher quality of materials and media to allow them to achieve this.

Painting is one of humankind’s earliest inventions. To be a painter in the twenty-first century is to be part of an extraordinarily long lineage. I see the ‘ancient’ and the ‘modern’ in art existing simultaneously, in constant evolution. My deep love of and involvement with music has always had a major influence on my work, in some ways more so than the influences from other art. I often paint to music. This, I believe makes my images more fluid – containing lots of wave form, curves and energy (emanating from rhythm and pulse) and colour and texture (denoting melody and harmonies. It is important that the picture be moving and alive, not ‘static and ‘dead’, with a certain sensual vitality. Art is the language of seeing.

-- mark ewenson, 2008