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Concorde, Walden I and Walden II


acrylic on canvas (diptych)
182.8 x 365.6 cm

Notes on this work

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Cézanne Fragment II 1971 
Cézanne Fragment I 1970

People in a landscape near Bristol watch Concorde take off. In another picture of the same format the greens that made the landscape become synthetic fields under a synethtic sky made from the blues in the sky that holds the aeroplane: the other colours (the people mostly) go to make rainbows. Above and below each landscape is a catalogue of the colours used in the order of their use. In the corners are week by week catalogues of the resulting terminal greys . The first is the spirit of Walden and the Concorde philosophers ( R Waldo Emerson is there, and Thoreau himself, the pencilmaker) and the music of Charles Ives|: the second is the spirit of Walden Two, B F Skinners contraption and over this hovers the trace of the plane, carrying taxes to oblivion. Somewhere there should have been the ghost of Tara and Hercules Brabazon Brabazon ('Oh God!, wrote Swift, 'How I remember names!'). However these are the materials and not the subject of the picture.

From Tom Phillips, Marlborough Fine Art, 14 September - 20 October 1973