Previously Unseen is grounded in drawing and painting directly from a subject: factories and urban streets, to explore structure and space. The challenge is one of interpreting the human built environment that we live amongst and experience our lives within. It strikes me that our cities are our emotional landscape and my work is a meditation on what the visual outcomes of that are. In beginning a painting, I am at first apprehensive; I proceed with a mix of drawing and painting and an element of indecision. I need something to observe so as to scan and take hold of shapes from buildings, spaces near and far, inspiration for colour and figures which inform the space.
The New Work – Essay by Michael Snape, 2019
Still painting. Paints plein air. Paints shards, compiled until an unbroken summary emerges of the scene observed.
Paints despite the stockpiled evidence that proves the folly of such an effort.
Clarke paints out of an ‘exhausted’ genre of semi-abstract expressionism.
But wait! The empty well of ‘nerve’ is suddenly full.
It is the viewer’s pleasure of employing the dustpan and brush to resurrect an otherwise fatuous unity.
Clarke brings new light and life and mends a broken world.
Just when it seemed the world had moved on Clarke shows us a life yet undefined.
By virtue of the arrows embedded there, old means are new means. It’s only a lifetime after all, that these visual languages were formed.
Clarke in his maturity, shows the benefit of a slow emerging language.
Have we forgotten already what we had not yet learned?
Still painting. Just started!