Display Cases in the Great Hall: Exhibition Archive


19 May through 15 September 2017

Paintings by Kit White

Nothing is missing from Kit White’s paintings. Excised elemental and skeletal forms imply bodies, leaning, intersecting, and often wavering vertical figures, composed of lines that stand against layers of color. The forces of nature are restrained yet completely present in the strokes that he sweeps in oil paint onto wooden panels, or canvas.  Lines and marks are conveyed via oil transfer in his drawings, enticed onto paper, usually from the verso, working without fully knowing where they will land. The process is reactive, instinctive, in contrast to the discipline of White’s thought process. Unique lines become entities unto themselves.

Paul Klee influenced White, who has developed his own “symbol language,” evident in these paintings.  Recent paintings like Kappus often derive from smaller sketches, like the watercolors shown here, where ideas are captured in minute detail. The painter creates a magnificent whole from shards and fragments, the broken lines and dashed marks of his small sketches. It is as though White’s imagination conceives things fully formed, launching them in any size onto a receiving support.

Describing his own work, the painter’s words are evocative, exacting and particular. “Lambent light” exactly describes his softly transparent swirls of one clear color over another. “Glazes” describe the swirling surfaces laid down over underpainting. The titles he assigns to his paintings render meaning for the whole. Of the three paintings shown here, Kappus might refer to the young poet who sought Rainier Maria Rilke’s advice, and published a compendium of his letters; Remit, and Staggered allude to themysterious wanderings of the painter’s mind.

Curated by Lisa A. Banner
Courtesy of the Artist and FreedmanArt