Harvey Daniels ( 1936-2013 )

Brighton, United Kingdom

“The plastic expression of space is inconceivable without light. Light and space complete one another.” —Theo van Doesburg

Together with the geometric feel of my paintings and prints, I am also seeking a structure that emphasizes the hard edges and straight lines in my work and the way that light works as a quality within the painting. My marks and shapes become both autobiographical and personal. For me, the work has to have an emotional charge and a poetry, even though the work is geometric and non-figurative.

Because the structure of the work is so important to me (two recent works had the word structure in their titles), the color is secondary. Critics, however, often write about my particular use of color, but also about the musicality of my work. Music is important to my work—not just in the listening, but in the attempt to make work that is musical in itself. By this I don’t mean descriptive or schematic and certainly not as a response, but as an equivalent. The brightness of a viridian against a black or the structure that uses a circle or a row of dots is just as much part of the musicality as is the vibrancy of the overall color. There is also the sense of fun which I use as a corrective.

My paintings may, in fact, begin loose and open; they always seem to tighten up in a geometric way. I use only about twenty or twenty-five motifs which include the square, the circle and the triangle. These simple motifs develop and often become very complex in the final work.

I have been working in a geometric, non-figurative way for more than twenty-five years.

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