Roberts Gallery Blog
Roberts Gallery Blog

AGAINST THE CURRENT

(Image Details: WITH THE CURRENT, 2016 by Susan Oomen, 24 x 30 in., oil on canvas)

The title painting for the show ‘Against the Current’, oil on canvas 28” x 46”, holds many of the key elements I had in mind when I decided upon the title for this show.  The two figures work together and are calm and confident, especially the figure on the right who looks straight ahead with a sureness of direction.  The canoeists do not appear to struggle or to be concerned about where they are.  They float in a timeless fog and silent surroundings, with little movement of water, yet they paddle against an unseen current.  They paddle from right to left.  It is an indication of opposition to the norm, as in our western culture most things work from left to right.  We read from left to right, we write and count from left to right, and many other things work this way without even thinking.

The most successful kind of work period for me is a reclusive one……a time of intense and relentless attacking of canvases, daily and without distractions or procrastination, not easy to achieve, but very successful for creating.  I mourn this time when it is over.  It is for me like the canoeists, working in an environment of tranquility and silence, against undercurrents of resistance and distractions.  As with the canoeists, it was not always a difficult struggle, but often one of joy and celebration.

‘With the Current’, 24” x 30”, oil on canvas, is the last painting I started for the show.  It is a painting with colour and movement, and describes the celebration of accomplishment.  It is in a sense as close as I come to a self-portrait.  The lone female canoeist goes with the current.  It is a sun dappled and sparkling water day.

-Susan Oomen