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"<a href="https://www.artistsforconservation.org/virtual-exhibit/12053/artist/7877/artwork/broken-abstract-13708">Broken Abstract</a>" by William Ritchie | Australia

Broken Abstract

Wallhanging by William Ritchie
60.00cm H x 83.00cm W
Year Completed:
Male blue-bill duck
Original for Sale:
Original Available
Artist will donate 25% to Australian Conservation Foundation from sale of this work.
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$3,800 USD
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The slightest disturbance or distortion of the water’s surface can deconstruct a realistic reflection into a masterful abstract image. The resulting patterns constantly change with the motion of the surface, producing a visual rhythm. The boundary between abstract and realism, as I see it in nature, is the point at which the more random and form lacking becomes more refined and designed for literal function and purpose. In this painting, I wanted to bring these two elements of nature together with a rather abrupt transition from abstract to realistic The prominent abstract component (the dark lines) in this image are derived from the reflections of bare twigs and branches from deciduous trees overhanging the water’s edge. The blue patches transecting the grey water surface are produced by the reflection of the sky on a partially overcast day. This resulted in an interesting interaction of line and colour with terrific abstract qualities as the water's gentle movement distorted the reflections. The only realistic element is the male bluebill duck {Oxyura Australis}. These relatively small and compact Australian ducks are one of my favourites. They move around like little motor boats, low in the water with their tail feathers near to, or flat against, the surface, diving occasionally to feed. The males are a terrific warm red/brown with black tails and head, and a brilliant icy blue bill.



Broken Abstract | Wallhanging by William Ritchie | Artists for Conservation 2020

2023 Artists for Conservation Exhibit Book