August 12 (#21)

Painting: Enamel on board
27 5/8 x 24 1/8 in.
Date: 1985

Charles Clough’s paintings comprise many layers of appropriation and replication. Beginning with a photograph of an older artwork (his own as well as historical examples), he crops it, blows it up, alters it, and then uses it as a surface for painting. He then re-photographs the image and paints over it, often repeating the entire process again. This approach is devoted to what Clough calls the “the photographic epic of a painter as a film or a ghost.” With its smears and swirls of color, August 12 (#21) is a highly gestural painting that retains impressions of the artist’s fingers. Swathes of deep reds, ashy browns, and bright orange evoke the heat of summer and the onset of autumn foliage.

All works by Charles Clough
RISD Museum, Rhode Island School of Design
Accession: 2009.59.5
  • The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Rhode Island. RISD Museum, Providence, Rhode Island, July 20, 2012 – December 2, 2012.

The information related to this object is presented on behalf of RISD Museum, Rhode Island School of Design. Questions or comments?