Ten years...collage and works on paper
by George Hofmann
George Hofmann has been a worker in the fields of post war painting for all of his career. He has accepted the new ground rules which were written in those critical decades, and has set out to explore the interactions of space, color, and emotions which were possible in the new pictorial arena. Initially we were most intrigued with the vision of color and space which he presented or did not present. But as we look at the evaluation of his work over a span of years, it is emotions and cognitive elements which form the cultural-mass, giving meaning beyond the technical and the material, and basically justifying the effort.

-Edward R. Brohel, Director
Image
Desert and Phoenix, 2001, acrylic and collage, 36 x 30"

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Image
Memory, 1991/94, acrylic and collage, 30 x 22"
Like most artists, my awarness of the history of art has been acute, but I always felt that a pictorial "arena" had been opened up for me by my artistic life.

Mondrian, Hans Hofmann, Olitski and Noland, who, in their paintings, moved beyond the shadowing and perspective of the past, found not only emotional resonance but pictorial animation and space, through color and composition alone. They made it possible for contemporary artists like Bridget Riley, Terry Winters, and others to find the pictorial in purely optical space.

Looking at the computer screen has reinforced my feeling that our sense of the pictorial can be altered without even realizing it: We hardly have perspective any more; instead we have Windows, planes of text and pictures floating in front of one another. (Would we even have Windows without the visual planes first created by Picasso and Braque in Cubism?)

Working on paper, I have tried to make optical space real without using old means. Collage, through its very nature, has been a natural doorway: overlapping and abutting space, and pieces of old compositions juxtaposed, often implying another dimension, without perspective, or, at least, altering perspective. Ten years have given me a new sense of purpose, and a deeper understanding of what my life in art has been about.

-George Hofmann

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