|Note from the Artist: This picture is unusual in my output in that it is not a representational painting
or drawing. Two interests came together at the same time and are combined in the work.
The first was that somebody asked me whether I used the golden section in setting out my paintings, to which the answer
was no, and that I didn't know exactly what it was anyway. I thought I'd better find out, and did some research.
The second was that a long held enthusiasm for very finely detailed objects came to a head when I set about trying to paint a lichen-covered stick. I wanted to do this on a larger than usual scale and in exacting detail. It rapidly became apparent that although the task was technically possible it was going to take a very long time indeed, so I stopped to consider how best to make the work.
I think it is true to say that all artists are trying in their work to convey one or more ideas about something they have experienced, certainly
that is true for me, and in this case I wanted to draw attention to the pleasure that can be had from looking at the tiny intricacies of very
delicate objects, in this case the lichen. It seemed to me that this could be better, and more easily, achieved by including a real
lichen-covered stick in the work than by painting a representation of one.
The two things came together, and the rest of the work arose from plays on words. Golden Section suggested the use of real gold,
in the form of gold leaf. The stick was of course from a tree so it followed that the work should be made on a wooden panel, and
be encased in a natural wood frame. Trees have leaves and this made a connection with the gold leaf. It then remained to
stick the leaf, the gold leaf, and the stick onto the panel.
The final connection was that the stick was found for me by the daughter of friends when we
were all out on a walk together. Her family nickname was Leafy, hence the subsidiary title.
The inscription round the outer edge of the picture reads:
A LINE OF LENGTH "A" IS DIVIDED INTO A LONGER PART "B" AND A SHORTER PART "C" SO THAT THE RATIO OF A TO B IS THE SAME AS THAT OF B TO C ♦ THE DIVISION IS CALCULATED USING A FIGURE "G" WHERE A=BG ♦ G IS ½(√5+1) ♦ ALSO G=G²−1 ♦ B=A(G−1) ♦ A=(A+B)(G−1) ♦ A RECTANGLE DRAWN WITH SIDES OF LENGTH A AND B CAN BE DIVIDED (AS HERE) INTO A SQUARE AND ANOTHER RECTANGLE OF IDENTICAL PROPORTIONS WHICH CAN BE SIMILARLY SUBDIVIDED AND SO ON ♦ THIS FORMULA HAS BEEN
KNOWN SINCE THE FOURTH CENTURY B.C.
NATURAL LEAF GOLD LEAF NATURAL WOOD STICK STUCK ONTO PREPARED PANEL
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