Marlene Dumas at Tate Modern

by sarahartonsherkin


Last week i went to London and saw an exhibition of one of the most prominent painters working today.. Marlene Dumas..

I found her work very inspiring..

Marlene Dumas: The Image as Burden



“I am the third person

observing the bad marriage

between art and life

watching the pose and the slip

seeing the end in the beginning

MD ‘Couples’ 1990

The intense, psychologically charged works of Marlene Dumas explore themes of sexuality, love, death and shame, often referencing art history, popular culture and current affairs. Dumas never paints directly from life, instead choosing to use pre-existing images for her source material. Yet despite working at a time dominated by the digital image and mass media, she cherishes the physicality of the human touch and the potency of painting.

One of my favourites: Evil Is Banal, 1984

Marlene Dumas Evil is Banal 1984

I love the contrasts in this one, with the white and black, and the subtle blue tones: The Widow, 2013

Marlene Dumas The Widow 2013

“Drawing is closer to whispering into someone’s ear, while painting is more like the ear itself. It contains all that has ever entered there. It listens more than it speaks. It throws speech into the dark. Painting is not speechless. It overflows. It is a drunken mermaid’s song.”

“Portraiture for Dumas is not simply about capturing likeness, but becomes a means of exploring political questions.”

 “My best works are erotic displays of mental confusions (with intrusions of irrelevant information).                           ‘The Eyes of the Night Creatures’, ’85

Book Run Over by a Car (Dedicated to Jonathan) 1975

‘Don’t Talk to Strangers’

“Art is a way of talking to strangers.”