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performance "three-dimensional fauvistic painting"

(photos by Tanya Cnossen)

Fauvistic painting was en vogue in the early years of the 20th c. It uses pure and bright, mostly primary, colours plus black and white. No colour gradients, no highlights and shadows. The technique makes for flat, two-dimensional paintings. Well, the question arose - would such painting still look flat if made on a three-dimensional surface?

So we decided to find out by experiment ....

Alex' head was considered a suitable three-dimensional surface to experiment on - but the hair of course had to go first. Marianne is quite used to wielding a pair of electric clippers on his head, so that was the first stage.

Then Marian had prepared herself to paint fauvistically (see the artistic cap!!) on this naked head. She used bodypaint, so that the result would not be too totally permanent.

It proved to be a time-consuming job. The "canvas" reported special sensations and a deeply Boeddha-like state of mind - but that is neither here nor there.

The general idea was to suggest an illuminated side (hot - white, yellow and red) and a shaded side (cold - green, blue and black).

The general conclusion that we can draw? Yes, even on a nicely shaped dome like this, the fauvistical painting still looks awfully flat .....

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