Rebecca Salter

H2, 1992

  • Medium:mixed media on canvas
  • Dimensions:122 x 183 cm

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About the Artwork

H2, 1992

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Salter’s practice aims to bridge the gap between Eastern and Western culture. Her works are a successful fusion of aspects of these two apparently far away artistic traditions. On the one hand, the Zen inspired quiet contemplation to which her works invite is a typically Eastern trait. On the other hand, however, this quality is mediated by a Western, ego-referred sensitivity, manifest in the proportions of the elements on the canvases –  which usually take the artist’s height and frequency of breadth as points of reference –  as well as in the reminiscences of Western artistic experiences, like those of Romantic painters, of the American artist Mark Tobey, and of the Beats poets, who used to randomly cut and reassemble their poems in new compositions.

Untitled H2 makes no exception. In accordance with the Eastern concept of elaborated simplicity, this apparently sombre work is in reality a product of extensive labour. Salter first created a painting on canvas using a soft palette and occasionally scratched its surface. She then cut it into dozens of squares and finally rearranged the diced fragments onto a new canvas, following a new disposition. Although chiefly interested in the unassuming and the everyday, Salter is not immune to the grand displays of natural forces. Indeed, the inspiration for this series of works came with her first trip to the turbulent landscape of the Lake District, one of the favourite sources of inspiration for British Romantic artists like Turner, Coleridge and Wordsworth.