By: Kevin @ kevinleeconrad.com

DSC08641-Redigera

A new painting has now hatched in the studio. I guess that I have a little momentum built up now. It’s constructed out of two curved panels. See the previous post about this one. I haven’t decided on a title yet, but am considering something like “looking up from the cracks” or “build it higher”

My thinking behind this one has to do with extreme perspectives. When I look at this scene, I am viewing it from a worm’s-eye-view. I recommend looking at buildings and other structures from this perspective because it makes you think differently about how they’re built and how they manage to stay upright.

The other aspect of perspective has to do with how we build buildings today. I have an interest in design and architecture clearly falls under this category. Being in Stockholm, I have many times been awestruck by how well built things are here. The older buildings in particular are made to last. They are often massively over-engineered. This is the case if you look back even 100 or two hundred years. Back then, materials were in abundance and the labor with which to build them was cheap.

Today, however, we live in a different world. Materials are no longer as abundant and labor is not cheap when it comes to construction. This painting was based on a building from probably about the 1600’s. If you look at the buildings built just 20 years ago, you can see that they’re practically falling apart before they’re completed. This is partly the case here in Sweden and definitely the case in the US. Homes there are made to look good and it is this facade that attempts to deceive the eye and make it look like it is more substantial than it really is. I can’t help but think of McMansions or housing developments in the US as I write this.

So, this painting is also a time line in a sense. The lower part of the building represents a structurally unsound building, built out of what appears to be crumpled paper, while the upper half of the building seems substantial. This painting attempts to reflect the old adage of needing to “start with a good foundation.”

In so many words, this painting attempts to echo the times. I feel that many of us–at least in the developed world– want nice things with a nice facade, a nice surface. The flip side of this is that, because we are not willing to pay for nor prioritize quality, we ultimately wind up with a world that is made up of things that aren’t built to last.

Advertisements