Sean Scully

Dublin, Ireland, 1945
  • Date: 
  • Technique: 
    Oil on canvas
  • Dimensions: 
    Diptych: 228,5 x 366 cm / Each part: 228,5 x 183 cm
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From the very beginning of his artistic activity, Sean Scully has worked with geometry, in a style that brings together the tradition of Piet Mondrian’s cool abstraction and that of Mark Rothko’s colour fields. In the 1980s, Scully starts incorporating into his compositions other pieces that he paints separately, underlining the spatial tension of his signature structure of vertical and horizontal bars; he plays with the trompe l’oeil that provokes the sensation of advance and retreat of parts of the work, an effect that is augmented by the variation of the colours. The use of colour is essential in the evolution of the art created by Scully, who gives up acrylic to instead use oil paint, which offers greater expressive power. His method lies in the application of successive layers of wet paint, in such a way that the colour changes depending on the drying time of each layer; the end result of each pigment is therefore always unexpected. References to the artist’s personal universe are another characteristic of Scully’s work, as demonstrated by titles that reveal, on occasion, an emotional point of departure for the creative process that involves geometric reason and also personal experience.