In this beautifully executed, concertina-fold book, Allen Jones RA explores the human form and how painting on a figure is a vastly different process, and has vastly different results, to painting from a figure.
The first half of the book features detail photography of the artist’s sculpture series Waiting on Table. The second half concertinas out to reveal the front and back of one of Jones’s most prominent sculptures, A Muse, which can also be displayed as a wall hanging.
For many years as a student, Jones had to draw from casts of Greek and Roman sculptures. Over time he developed a reverence for their idealised bodies, heightened by the tactile purity of the white marble. It seemed sacrilegious to him, therefore, to discover later that the marble was often painted over with colour.
“Painting on a figure is quite different from painting the figure” is an observation that Jones has grown to embrace, and one that has greatly informed his practice. Like the Romans, Jones has discovered that colour matters.
Jones was elected a Royal Academician in 1986. He is one of Britain’s most distinguished artists from the pioneering Pop Movement, whose paintings and sculptures are held in many important international collections, including: Tate Gallery and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington DC, the Museum of 20th-Century Art in Vienna, the Wallraf-Richartz Museum in Cologne, the Moderna Museet in Stockholm and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.
Colour Matters is one of a collection of four artist’s books by Allen Jones that Black Dog Press is releasing in September 2022.