Keith Tyson - Contemporary Art Part I New York Wednesday, November 11, 2009 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Keith Tyson Projects, London; Private collection, London

  • Catalogue Essay

    Turner Prize wining artist Keith Tyson works in a range of media, investigating the unrelenting query of human experience and existence. He examines the inexplicable forces of nature, its causality, its limits and possibilities. Tyson addresses the questions with a scientific and technological approach, rooted from his background in shipbuilding and engineering. His work is a powerful statement about using science as a way to see and understand the world and the art produced therein. While he is meticulous about his process, understanding the properties of his materials and the effects they have on each other, the result is purely determined by the course of nature. The application of the paint is the question posed to human existence; the reaction answers to nature’s impulsivity.
    In the present lot, Nature Painting, 2006, Tyson works with an acid primed aluminum panel. He pours various pigments and paints and witnesses the natural interaction of the substances. As gravity pulls it across the panel, the behavior of the different fluids is determined by the viscosity of the paint, the rate of evaporation, the chemical reaction, the ambient temperature, the quantities of the paint and the order in which it is applied. The outcome is never predetermined or predictable; it is a scene only in nature. Familiar forms begin to surface, the outline of a landscape, a nebulous cloud, a unique rock formation. As Tyson points out, the significant aspect of the series is not that they are paintings of nature, but that they are paintings by nature.


Nature Painting


Enamel on aluminum.

36 x 36 in. (91.4 x 91.4 cm).

Signed, titled and dated “K. Tyson Nature Painting 2006” on the reverse.

$50,000 - 70,000 

Sold for $60,000

Contemporary Art Part I

12 Nov 2009
New York