In this self-initiated research project by young artist Dave Hagen he tries to discover the secrets of Jackson Pollock’s masterpiece Alchemy (shown above) from 1947. The American born Pollock (January 28, 1912, Cody, Wyoming) is very well-known for his complex works of art which he created with his famous “drip style”. Pollock poured paint directly onto the canvas but also used sticks, trowels, or knives to drip and splatter paint. Pollock liberating himself from the vertical constraints of an easel Pollock by laying his raw canvas down on the floor. The “action painting” of Jackson Pollock results in a very lively and undefinable abstract and organic painting.
In his attempt Hagen tries to redefine Alchemy and has searched for a way to break down the painting into more comprehensible parts for himself and the public. Trying to get to the core of the painting and the hand of the painter. By establishing five separate layers and by tracing these layers onto transparent paper and, there is paid more attention to detail which can reveal parts of the painting that otherwise would have been missed. A good example of this are the hieroglyphic signs that really stand out in the tracings.
Hagen tries to respect the characteristics of the original painting, not losing its intricate organic forms and the way of interaction between these layers is examined. Nevertheless the process seems interesting the “end product” is quite unexpressive. Here Hagen misses the opportunity to make his own mark and has to push himself further and search for more opportunities into making this project a success and finding a way of making this a work of his own. Different media could and definitely should be further explored, in our current day and age artists have to try harder to be original and try to connect to the viewer in every way possible by using, exploring and combining various techniques.