It’s Elemental: Line and Colour in Contemporary Art
October 24 — 29, 2020
Auction begins to close at 2 pm ET
RIC EVANS, R.C.A. (1946-)
Private Collection, Toronto
Bowers, Robert. “Mercer Union | RIC EVANS, An Interview with Ric Evans.” Mercer Union, a Centre for Contemporary Art, www.mercerunion.org/exhibitions/ric-evans. Accessed 3 Oct. 2020.
Ric Evans’ mastery of line and colour in his iconic geometric abstractions is exemplified in “Abertawe Green/Grey” (1996). Composed of five sharply-divided rectangles, each colour field either emerges from the surface or recedes into the background, our perceptions changing due in part to the jarring shifts of warm and cool colours. The painting is complex as it elicits many perceptual responses simultaneously; we first see the blocks of colour as individual entities then engage with the unique relationships they have with the adjoining segments as they break through the confines of the blocks. Tension between the red central shape that commands the canvas and the deep blue and black areas, for example, contrasts with the less energetic pairings with the fields to the right.
This painting is a built environment, almost architectural, where shapes, separated by Evans’ use of hard-edged lines, are arranged with mathematical precision. When asked about his handling of lines in his painting practice, Evans said that “using straight lines is one way of making a painting; a chosen restriction. I like seeing things in their own area.”