Big Pink Shimmering One

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Big Pink Shimmering One
Paramount Award Winner, 2002 Wallace Art Awards.

Judy Millar tells us that when she embarked on the period of work leading up to the production of Big Pink Shimmering One she had made ‘pretty significant changes to the way I was thinking about my work... I was going through extravagant amounts of materials at the time, as my newly found processes were wasteful by necessity; so much paint put on and wiped away in search of new images.’ Big Pink Shimmering One is critically important as one of the works realised during this period of change, which the artist says ‘laid the basis of everything that has followed on in my practice during the last ten years. Following the consequences of each step I took led me further on. No themes, no subject matter, no style-searching, just simple steps taken from one place to another.’ The essentiality of Big Pink Shimmering One is achieved by an intense retraining in the act of painting itself.

The technical accomplishment of this large, vibrant work can be found at the micro-level. It is in those darker lines where the woven, remnant brush strokes cut across and meet each other. Millar paints a continuous volume, ironically achieved by erasing as many marks or strokes as she has made. Yet this erasure is Millar’s starting point – these reversals are in fact the next ‘step’ which follow on a close and continuous examination of what the artist does with paint – a method that applies especially to Millar’s experiments with ‘overlays of semi-transparent colours’. She was ‘fascinated with the shifts in hue that happened before my eyes, as one colour was pulled over another. I would lay down various underpaintings and work a range of colours over the top, waiting for combinations that would come to life. The combination of bright pink and dirty brown used in the winning work was something I found immediately promising and worked with in a number of works.’

Judy Millar was the McCahon House Artist-in-Residence December 2006 – February 2007.

Catalogue text:
Published on the occasion of the Twenty Wallace Art Awards Paramount Winners Exhibition.
14 February to 22 April 2012 at The Pah Homestead, TSB Bank Wallace Arts Centre and 2 August to 30 September 2012 at the Wallace Gallery Morrinsville.
Acrylic and oil on canvas
1930 x 2840
Yes, verso
Accession number

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