Richard Diebenkorn | Editioned Prints
"The pretty, initial position which falls short of completeness is not to be valued - except as a stimulus for further moves." - Richard Diebenkorn
Richard Diebenkorn is one of those rare artists who doggedly pursued his own interest in artistic style and subject matter regardless of what the market dictated or fashion expected of him as an artist. At various times in his career he worked with either landscape or figuration. Sometimes he did both simultaneously with very subtle differences. In two of his prints, X (1986) which is obviously figurative and Double X, which is obviously landscape, he makes the ambiguous shift back and forth with great ease. The crossed legs of a model seated in a chair become intersecting roads in a landscape. Shoulders become mountains and facial features meld into ambiguous aspects of terrain.
As is customary with Diebenkorn, these prints reflect a great deal of experimentation in both imagery and technical prowess. He was an artist who does the bulk of his risk-taking in his works on paper. Painterly progress is much slower to define in his canvases and more inclined to a kind of classic painting despite the major shifts in his career from abstract painting to figurative painting and back again. The serenity observed in the large canvases of the Ocean Park series belies the enormous amount of vacillation and turmoil in his works on paper, both drawings and prints.