Sunday, May 28, 2017

Tod Bailey Savage Color - The Orchard - Interview

Tod Bailey, “The Orchard,” 2017, Oil on Canvas, 38” x 42”

"..coloring has always been a primary component of Tod’s pictorial construction..."   (Virginia Billeaud Anderson - asks Tod Bailey about tonal balance in his abstract painting "The Orchard.")

Tod Bailey Savage Color - The Orchard - Interview

After I cooked him yummy blue berry pancakes, Tod Bailey showed me his newest paintings. Close inspection of his handling of color in “The Orchard” revealed nearly perfect tonal balance, enhanced by an overall quality of radiance.

The reason this got my attention is because he used predominantly cool color tones in “The Orchard,” and it’s extremely difficult to succeed with a cool color scheme, in fact most artists do a miserable job of balancing dominant cool tones with the warm colors required for visual comfort. Since coloring has always been a primary component of Tod’s pictorial construction, I questioned him:

Virginia Billeaud Anderson: Artists often blow it when working in the cool end of the color spectrum, we've all seen puke-y canvases unleashed which are over weighted with blues and greens. But in “The Orchard” you achieved cohesiveness by offsetting the cool tones with warm pinks and yellows, as well as some neutrals. Tell me about the process which resulted in such elegant balance.  Did you sketch the cool and warm passages? When you arranged the composition, did you make color choices mindful of traditional color theory based on contrasting and complimentary hues?  Or, was it all disheveled and intuitive?

Tod Bailey: Virginia, there was no sketch. Just intuitive color play. Luck?
It wasn’t difficult to accept the lack of intellectual program behind this particular bit of color virtuosity.  I'm quite familiar with Tod’s work and know that at times his pictorial engagement is undisciplined and raw, as if it springs from savage thrill. Tod's collectors find that cannibalism seductive.

One hour later, though, he reconsidered and admitted that perhaps things did not unfold spontaneously and intuitively, instead, "dumbass luck" was backed up by intense concentration.

Tod Bailey: Look, I worked on that painting for five months. It took time!

“The Orchard” will be displayed in Tod Bailey’s solo exhibition of paintings, Tod Bailey, which opens on Saturday June 3, 2017 at Gspot Gallery in Houston, Texas.  The opening reception is Saturday, June 3, 6-9 pm. Gspot Gallery, which is owned by that rascal Wayne Gilbert, is located at 310 East Ninth Street, Houston Texas.

Image: Tod Bailey, “The Orchard,” 2017, Oil on Canvas, 38” x 42”

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