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b. 1943, United States

Joan Witek Biography

'Black is usually considered the absence of colour: it is severe and rigorous but this is only two facets of its many qualities. One of the reasons I am attracted to black is indeed its dichotomies. It is sophisticated and primitive, emotional and intellectual, it is a colour that everyone responds strongly to, in one way or another.' – Joan Witek.

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Joan Witek’s work has always been involved with the colour black: whether in oil paint, water colour or pencil, Witek’s works concentrate on specific materiality and formalist content, which she twists by adding a linguistic domain using titles from various sources.

The unity of Witek’s body of work is defined not through a signature style but through ways of picture making that permit the works to look very different, and yet all are immediately recognisable.

Although black can be associated with negative ideas and expressions, it occupies a wide range. Witek’s large paintings, as well as her small drawings imply a sense of emotional intimacy. The colour is strong and delicate, rational and emotional. Her paintings are defined by radical condensation and Witek’s potentially infinite suggestiveness is accomplished using deliberately limited means. For example, the expression of a black watercolour on delicate, wrinkled rice paper or a black painting made of repeated brush strokes; all create a meaning and intensity for the viewer.

Text courtesy Bartha_contemporary.

Joan Witek
featured artworks

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Untitled (WC-105) by Joan Witek contemporary artwork painting
Joan Witek Untitled (WC-105), 1994 Watercolour on film
55.8 x 43.2 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Study for Flamenco by Joan Witek contemporary artwork mixed media
Joan Witek Study for Flamenco, 1997 Pigments and graphite on mylar
58 x 55 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Atlantic Detail - Silver ( D-195 ) by Joan Witek contemporary artwork works on paper
Joan Witek Atlantic Detail - Silver ( D-195 ), 2003 Pastell, silverpencil on paper
60.96 x 45.72 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Sketch for Atlantic VI ( D-187 ) by Joan Witek contemporary artwork mixed media
Joan Witek Sketch for Atlantic VI ( D-187 ), 2003 Pencil, silverpencil and watercolour on paper
38 x 50.8 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Sketch for Atlantic VII ( D-189) by Joan Witek contemporary artwork works on paper
Joan Witek Sketch for Atlantic VII ( D-189), 2003 Pencil and silverpencil on paper
38 x 50.8 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Untitled by Joan Witek contemporary artwork painting
Joan Witek Untitled, 1995 Watercolour on film
377 x 50.3 cm
Bartha_contemporary Request Price & Availability
Untitled by Joan Witek contemporary artwork painting
Joan Witek Untitled, 1995 Watercolour on film
34.5 x 37.6 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
Untitled by Joan Witek contemporary artwork painting
Joan Witek Untitled, 1995 Watercolour on film
32 x 45.6 cm
Bartha_contemporary Contact Gallery
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