As you know, I'm not a fan of modern abstract painting, and I never will be. But somehow, I think this works because the abstraction is serving a purpose in these paintings. In classical literature, an eidolon refers to a sort of apparition or phantom image of a person. And that is certainly the effect that Shane Wolf has created in this series. We see areas of the figures that are only partially painted with a gesture or subtle suggestion. The abstraction is not for abstraction's sake.
Apart from the narrative played out in the series, the execution of the paintings is simply amazing. Wolf has a magnificent technique of highly finished figures with crisp hard edges and lifelike flesh tones and textures. He is clearly a product of his training of one of the best Academies in Florence. The anatomy is spot on, and he has a clear understanding of the foreshortening of perspective, which allows him to paint the figure in various poses from various angles. The paintings also convey a wonderful sense of movement, which is another aspect that the abstraction contributes to.
The Eidolon Series has a number of paintings in it, but I'll only be posting one here called "Thrust." The rest are equally as great and mysterious, and can be found on his website www.shane-wolf.com
|Thrust (The Eidolon Series)|
oil on canvas