Nina Rodin>2012> Matter / Mater




Matter /Mater

date > February 2012
media > acrylic on board
size > 3 x (51 x 35 cm) + book (archival prints mounted in hand-made album) Edition of 5. (19.5 x 13.5 2.7 cm)
status > available

> This work was started on the first of january 2012 and continued right up until the exhibition 'Making Space' (click here for details) for which the work was made.

> It was inspired by hidden histories of famous old paintings which I was reminded of when I saw the Mona Lisa again in October 2011. Such paintings, when x-rayed often reveal previous compositions or entire paintings that were painted over in the making of the final piece. Similarly, when I painted the floor of the Slade grey for my degree show, I was moved by how many times this must have been done and how many colourful spills - or perhaps entire floor paintings? - are hidden inbetween the layers. When I was invited by the Ph.D students to show work at the Slade in an exhibition on the theme of artistic process and psychoanalysis, I remembered the floor...

> Each panel has 9 superimposed paintings. One centimeter of the panel is masked off before even the gesso is applied and then a centimeter is masked off again before each subsequent painting is started. Each painting almost entirely obliterates the next. Each painting is based on a portrait of my mother at different times of her life and the process is documented in the book with small digital reproductions of the paintings. The final layer matches the floor and the cover of the book. All that is left of each painting is then a centimeter-wide strip, the lumps and bumps on the grey surface and a digital reproduction.

> Through the work, I explore my growing doubt with representational painting, most of all with portraiture which can only ever be a partial and biased re-presentation of the individual it portrays. As such the work also deals with the passing of time, loss and mourning. And with the notion of value in painting. I remain more fascinated with the floor of the Slade than I am with the Mona Lisa...

> Details:

panel 1

panel 2

panel 3

book open


book page

> Have since thought that perhaps the images printed in the book should simply be presented as thumbnails on a screen: less preciouss, more pixellated...



> Related work: a previous piece with several paintings, each obliterating the previous one...

25 samples