“People sometimes think I take a white canvas and paint a black sign on it, but this is not true. I paint the white as well as the black, and the white is just as important.”
In the 50s, Franz Kline, an artist hailing from Pennsylvania, created a series of paintings with ink on telephone book pages. Broad and spontaneous-looking black strokes cover inexpensive-looking printed paper.
Moving away from the grand theme of expressionists working on majestic canvases, his pre-meditated architectural shapes found form on telephone book pages because they were readily available.
When observing this series, critics point out its seeming ‘action’, its influence from Asian calligraphy and the impression of speed in creation.
For us, these paintings have a different implication.
In light of the extinction of telephone books, in the age of the internet, we think these have been imbued a new life. Re-visiting these works through the eyes of a Millennial, they are lent a rustic and antique charm.
What do you think of time changing the meaning of old art? Join the discussion below.