on canvas by Fanchon
"Collective Phenomena" oil on
paper amd mixed media by Alison Appleton and Fanchon Fröhlich
been collaborating with Alison
Appleton in the above "Collective
Phenomena" work and since initiating "Collective
Phenomena" creative workshops, with many other
international artists and musicians such as Jane mcCormack, Sylvie
Kate Dadiani, Alison Appleton, Nagachoo, Nicole Bartos, composer
Lawrence Ball, 'Frakture' group, etc.
release' - Fanchon
Frohlich retrospective - Please,
click here to read printable version.
Supernovae" by Jeremy
Reed (about Fanchon Frohlich):
C O M M E N T A R Y: P
E R F O R M E R S
"The Dialectic of the Unconscious and the Conscious: Fanchon Frohlich. "
together on the same surface with a musician, Lawrence Ball, who
improvises on our movements and guides them, acting together in a
Let us end our fear of the unconscious creativity of others and replace it
by a dialogue between different people. Let us bring to an end the arbitrary
in art in favour of the rigorous and mysterious structure of the unconscious.
There exists a whole unconscious to be explored. Take an example: the picture
space is not one homogeneous whole but has tendencies to rise and fall, interacting
with whatever is placed within it ‚ a floating and a descent in opposite
directions: push and pull.
Before beginning to paint the artists choose three colours according to our
deep mood or what Kandinsky called 'the Spiritual in Art' or even arbitrarily.
If we could see colours in the profound way we can hear music, there might
be a question of actually perceiving counterpoint, the intertwining of lines
of colours leading to chords. Ah, if we only could!
But we can actually do so by selecting those colours that we actually use ‚ not
by using opaque colours. These opaque colours obliterate each other ‚ crossing
out and annihilating the underlying traces whereas we want to preserve those
remnants. Using only transparent colours, the traces show through so rich interferences
can arise. You might see a coloured gesture intersecting with another, creating
a space in which a new colour ‚ unnamed, mysterious ‚ arises in
this particular coming together. The unexpected! 1000 types of black. You can
hear the colour.
When improvising according to our motions, Lawrence guides us in our deep moods,
sometimes enhancing, sometimes diminishing them and guides us in stalking the
right time to intervene in the composition. This creates a sense of self-generation
across media between music and painting. It is concrete ‚ a kind of collective
Communal work very very quickly eliminates the personal and allows it to merge
with the collective. In practice one should be aware of what the others have
done as in a chess game ‚ perceiving the whole field ‚ where the
desire to be competitive is excluded. It no longer consists of simply asking
who has done what, but concentrating instead on what has been committed to
the space and pulling unity out of that.
Why do we hold ourselves upright over the surface rather than painting in the
more conventional way, upright? This seemingly trivial question provides deep
insight into the resonance required. The arm, instead of being supported is
stretched out in order to allow a fluid movement from the whole body. These
gestures can be very fast or very slow but there are certain provisos: the
resonance between what has already gone before and what is intended to follow
must be maintained.
Such 'resonance' is essential, linking forms of gesture to each other, providing
an underlying tentative ever-changing framework which can develop in infinite
ways and even linking music with painting.
At first different types of coherence appear and can be metamorphosed during
the course of the work. As it approaches completion, an analysis, a reconsideration,
a collective decision may be arrived at, or there might be too many possibilities
arising each demanding its own continuation. Then discussions arise ‚ ä."maybe
it should be done this way", or else "ä.there would be more
unity if it went that way". We might even paint in the air to suggest
the tentative outcome. Or one might say 'then do it' and the free dialogue
returns. Thus collective decision might determine which possibility is chosen.
It is, of course, possible that the sought-for unity will appear in an unexpected
way, giving a harmonious feeling, but it also possible that it will not, leaving
it free to another attempt.
Collective creation has to do with spontaneity that comes from the unconscious
and this may be succeeded by a critical attitude. This is the dialogue between
the conscious and the unconscious.
Choosing the name: 'Collective Phenomena' was borrowed from my own paper, Collective
Phenomena, written from a scientific viewpoint. The original Collective Phenomena
was concerned with possible and actual developments in a scientific context.
Because these movements seemed to have a wider source, it was extended to include "Collective
Phenomena" (not only a wider concept of art but even relations between
people as collective phenomena).
What is gained and what lost by entering into the 'Collective Phenomena' experience?
Does entering into the collective unconscious of another person give a wider
access? Yes, but this venturing is not a permanent transformation. It is rather
a temporary coming together ‚ a merging, an illumination and then a letting
go. It is an event that can be repeated by different people at different times‚ an
event of mutual self-generation. We invite you in."
© Fanchon Frohlich, Liverpool 2000 (Extract from: http://www.planettree.org/2000/ccolphen.html)
Read more about Fanchon Fröhlich and
see more examples of her work and writings on the following websites:
to: Fanchon Frohlich as guest artist