WET; a modest word dripping with ambiguity, simultaneously flexible and inflexible; in its simplest form – WET is not dry. But this unyielding portrayal of the word doesn’t acknowledge its nuances on the road to becoming dry (for that is what we assume WET wants). And it’s hard to know exactly when WET is no longer; that moment of change prompting us to reveal its new physical state, ‘I now pronounce this painting dry!’
The words, ‘WET paint’, are a beacon to those who don’t want to change the physical state of something important as it moves towards dryness. But when the paint is wet, it’s changeable and malleable – you can remove or improve it. WET paint buys you time, which, in the grand scheme of things, is invaluable.
It’s a gradual process, like the growth of grass or the boil of a kettle, and we instinctively know that watching paint dry should take a long time. But watching parts of our planet dry is taking no time at all …
Two favoured replacements for the word WET are soppy and sodden, both with lucid onomatopoeic attributes. Their audible qualities openly declare their state of WETness, allowing the speaker to chew on the syllables thus emitting the sound of hissing steam. With that is the possibility of saliva being released upon speaking them, consequently providing a three dimensional experience.
This painting is Oil on Linen and was a delight to paint in every way. The Linen, with so much texture to play with, and the vibrancy of the oil paints added layers of fun at every stage. The painting was continued around it’s edges (see image below) to further enhance the effect for the viewer who may approach in any direction. Oil paint colours: Viridium, Ultramarine, Indigo, Cadmium Yellow, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Pizzouli Earth, Titanium White.
WET, the painting, is on exhibition and for sale throughout the 2017 Adelaide Fringe Festival event, ‘Words … seeing, listening, feeling’ exhibition at the Old Onkaparinga Woollen Mills in South Australia. Click here to find out more about this exhibition on Facebook or visit the website www.hillsart.com.au.