Motion Picture – Abstract Painting by Clay Mahn

Abstract Painting – Motion Picture by Clay Mahn 1

Clay Mahn, a noteworthy abstract artist hailing from Missoula, Montana and now working in Chicago, Illinois, has carved a distinct niche in the art world with his innovative painting techniques. Born in 1988, Mahn’s artistic process is defined by subtraction rather than addition, a method that distinctively sets him apart in the realm of abstract painting. This technique involves layering paint and then artfully sanding away portions of each layer, revealing underlying forms that seem predestined to be uncovered. Through this unique approach, Mahn’s paintings become a journey of discovery, unearthing hidden beauty within the canvas.

In his work, Mahn skillfully combines intentional composition with organic fluidity. His pieces often incorporate elements of language, repetition, and motifs, striking a balance between careful planning and natural progression. This blend of deliberate and spontaneous elements in his work reflects a deep engagement with his craft and an understanding of the artistic process as an evolving journey.

Besides painting, Mahn is also adept in sculpture, showing a particular affinity for concrete due to its rich history, versatility, and practicality. He utilises this material to create sculptures that resonate with human forms and experiences. When it comes to painting, his preference for acrylics, modified with substances like graphite or calcium carbonate, allows him to build and then meticulously sand down multiple thin layers, resulting in a polished finish. This emphasis on materiality and process is evident in his thematic explorations as well. His recent works are inspired by the red/blue landscape format, which he finds both therapeutic and meditative. These creations are more than mere abstractions; they represent subtle shifts in composition, influenced by natural phenomena like the changing positions of the sun and moon. Clay Mahn’s art transcends the visual product, offering a profound exploration of materials, processes, and themes that continually evolve and inspire.

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