In two words what does this painting make you think of?

Posted by Tenby Museum on Oct 10, 2017 Blog No Comments

That is the question posed by local artist Alan Rees-Baynes to visitors to this museum a few months ago. Two paintings were selected and underneath each painting was a shelf which asked that question. Each two word response was numbered and then the visitor would place their words into a frame with an envelope slot. Hence the paintings had begun.

The award-winning poet Gillian Clarke and Sue Roe (the author of a biography of Gwen John) also provided two word responses towards the painting by Gwen John. “I will not say which are theirs” said Alan, “as this is the beauty of the anonymous appeal of this concept for the viewer.”

Each set of two words were emailed over time to the artist, until the full quota of slips had been used. In the meantime two paintings that mimic the tones of the originals were undertaken in Alan’s studio, both displaying a simplified impression of the originals.

These simplified shades of black to white via several greys, was on purpose to bring colour to each painting with the words. So once the words were amassed, they depicted a similar shade that existed on the original, with some letters consisting of several colours. This was the first time words have been treated in this way in the artist’s text-based paintings.

Overall Alan Rees-Baynes was grateful for all the words supplied by the visitors/responders, and they have become an important feature in the completion of two paintings. Alan had also hoped that in this age of frantic shuffling, and constantly on the move lifestyle we live today, to take a moment and enjoy the presence of these two paintings resulting in a two word response. There is still an important requirement of the painting, and it’s trigger for thought in today’s society.