After visiting the recent exhibition Franz Kline: Coal and Steel at Baruch College's Sidney Mishkin Gallery, Tim Keane blogs about the origins of Franz Kline's classic black and white paintings and their unique ability embody a "kinetic" effect.
Keane writes: "To the extent that they represent an object outside themselves, Kline’s black-and-whites grasp the kinetic nature of things and the partial, incomplete nature of seeing. These paintings allude to parts of a whole, focusing on an indiscriminate component of a random structure, whose proportions are amplified by the black lines and enriched by the textured white ground. The brushstrokes, in their mutating blackness, seem to be moving. The lines they create point to realities outside the frame of the painting. These heavy lines are locomotives in the truest sense. The black contours oscillate, vibrate and harmonize according to a logic that only seems to emerge from the viewer’s stimulated attention to the pattern." Keane concludes: "In studying Kline’s black-and-whites, the images force us to recognize — to literally see — how our eyes, ahead of our thoughts, constantly orient our bodies in relation to space, and how peculiar or miraculous this fact is."