My Visit to the Stephan Friedman Gallery

My initial thoughts on this set of paintings were that it reminded me of paintings back in Thailand. It was probably because of the use of colour, for example emerald green is commonly used to paint moody paintings. I was drawn to the paintings because of the moody background and it seems that the sky and the sea were some kind of natural disaster, like the beginning of a big storm. However, in some paintings the people within the painting seemed to be enjoying their time/ not afraid of the powerful sea. I found this an interesting contrast and am intrigued to know more about the painting. My initial thoughts on the meaning of the paintings were that they were migrating across the seas, in the more serious looking paintings. However there are some paintings within the set that showed the people looking like they are conversing happily and laughing. This gave me the idea that the artist is trying to show how people that are battling for their lives at sea are human too, having emotions and feelings just like everyone, showing how we should empathise with them.

When it reminded me of paintings back from Thailand, they tend to be traditional paintings. However, the people in these painting seem to be wearing quite recent fashion/clothing so in my opinion there is an interesting juxtaposition between the figures and the background. Although I really like the background and appreciate the immense detail within these paintings I have to admit that I'm not the biggest fan of painting portraits/people using intense colours and making them look photo-realistic. I prefer a more stylised way of painting portraits however I really appreciate the contrast and interesting storyline of the paintings. Also, I feel like these paintings combined many art movements into one. I feel like the background of his works remind me of paintings in the romanticism period however the figures within the paintings look more contemporary. 


© Matina Piamkulawanich, all rights reserved


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