John Duckworth

Region: South

My paintings and photographs exist in the space between the accurate and the abstract, reducing, blurring, and simplifying to reveal the essence of memory and perception. Surrounded by the lush lowlands of rural South Carolina, I am inspired by the quiet solitude of Hopper, the cinematography of Jean-Luc Goddard, the captured moments of Cartier-Bresson, the serenity of Rothko, the range of Richter, and the endless juxtapositions of Albers.

The iCONS series is at its core a deconstruction: breaking down form to a new stage of recognition, flattening a painterly surface rich with harmonies of hue, separating familiar images from their established meaning. My original intention was to copy artwork by artists I admired to better understand their process, but I couldn't help creating my own interpretations. In a complicated process, I use vector graphics to divide photographic images into shapes of tonal ranges that I then fill with hundreds of hand-mixed pools of pure color and finish with liquid glass. Portraiture fascinates me, as in our age of hypnotic self-branding, the face of an icon symbolizes something far greater than the individual.