Feet in the Water

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  • Provenance

    OHWOW Gallery, Los Angeles

  • Catalogue Essay

    Lucien Smith’s Feet in the Water, 2012, is part of a series of highly acclaimed rain paintings from the rising talent, whose work is becoming greatly sought after. They represent abstraction, emotion and nature with simple figurative gestures which mimic the rain, an instantly recognisable element fraught with symbolic meaning. Smith ironically pokes at this notion whilst depicting the beauty of the rain and, indeed, nature itself. The rain series was created when Smith, distracted and enclosed by the city, moved upstate. This isolation from the city allowed him to work on a larger scale and, most importantly, reconnect with nature, which Smith used as a catalyst for his art. Additionally, the time spent upstate encouraged Smith to work with different tools, in this case, the fire extinguisher. His innovative use of an old fashioned fire extinguisher filled with paint to spray his canvases is especially effective in this particular case as it physically imitates precipitation with falling droplets of paint. The effect is original and representative yet abstract, referencing the artists Smith was inspired by, from Jackson Pollock to Morris Louis. Rain as a subject matter is not only indicative of his appreciation of nature; it also illustrates a larger metaphor. Smith explains, “When I was looking through comics, I’d run across the same image of characters trapped in the rain. It’s like a universal symbolic image of being sad and alone.” (the artist Lucien Smith and Bill Powers, purple NEWS, 2012) For this reason, Smith progresses towards the use of light blue paint, as in this particular lot, because of the allusions to sadness. Furthermore, Smith noted that rain is often illustrated in light blue, which encouraged him to start using this colour. Consequently, the piece is representative of rain both physically and allegorically, whilst retaining a beautifully simplistic pictorial space.

2

Feet in the Water

2012
acrylic on unprimed canvas
244 x 183 cm. (96 1/8 x 72 in.)
Signed 'Lucien Smith' on the overlap.

Estimate
£40,000 - 60,000 

sold for £194,500

Contact Specialist
Peter Sumner
Head of Contemporary Art, London
psumner@phillips.com
+44 207 318 4063

Contemporary Art Evening

London Evening Sale 10 February 2014 7pm