As an interior designer, using elements with strong patterns can be a critical ingredient in achieving a dynamic overall composition. The right pattern can be keen and bold, carrying a role as a leading focal point, while simultaneously hiding in plain sight, given its level of conversational harmony with the elements around it. Their high contrast catches the eye and lifts the mood, and their repetitive abstract nature allows them to slip into the background as a supporting feature — a mysterious contradiction that is nonetheless inspiring time and time again.
Francois Fiedler – Peinture, stone lithograph 1960 Francois Fiedler – Sandbar, stone lithograph 1974
The art of Francois Fiedler, Hungarian-French painter contemporary with Chagall and Miró amongst others, is often marked by an intrinsic through-line to the movements of nature, as seen in works like Peinture or Sandbar, stone lithographs from 1960 and 1974. Though these patterns are more organic than geometric, they use repetition to give that appealing settling quality.
Pablo Palazuelo – Fractured Sketch Lines, stone lithograph 1970 Fareh – Prague II (Blue), SIGNED silkscreen 1991
And many times a pattern describes a space utilizing irregularity which yet maintains an overall balance, like in Fractured Sketch Lines from Pablo Palazuelo, a 1970 stone lithograph, or Prague II (Blue) from Fareh, a signed 1991 silkscreen.
Rodolphe Raoul Ubac – Galerie Maeght, stone lithograph 1973 Rodolphe Raoul Ubac – Un Coin De Terre, stone lithograph 1972
Rodolphe Raoul Ubac, on the periphery of Surrealism, manages to make his abstract works seem both like characters or personalities and also as vignetted descriptions of larger phenomena. In Galerie Maeght and Un Coin De Terre, 1970s stone lithographs, the open-ended nature allows much room for interpretation and complementary pairings.
Unknown Artist – Palatka and Alachva, SIGNED silkscreens 2010
For two small-edition signed silkscreens by an unknown artist, Palatka and Alachva make simplicity a singing forte, with black, white and some beautifully subdued hues creating great depth while not straying away from a distinctive structure.
"The right pattern can be keen and bold, carrying a role as a leading focal point, while simultaneously hiding in plain sight..."
Paul Klee – Characters in Yellow, offset lithograph 2018 Paul Klee – The Vase, offset lithograph 2018
And Paul Klee’s forms are perplexingly pattern-like and humanistic all at once, with a unique kind of curving cubism that feels both warm and decorative. Characters in Yellow and The Vase allow room for both contemplation and meditation, and a work such as The Townsatisfies some surprisingly modern design aesthetics for being originally painted around a hundred years ago.
Paul Klee – The Town, offset lithograph
Sam Francis and Wassily Kandinsky both use randomness as a construction vehicle, with the splatter effect crossing over some choice delineations in Paintings and Drawings and the free-associative explorations of White Zig Zag each commanding fun yet darkly rich timbres.
Sam Francis – Paintings And Drawings, offset lithograph 1979 Wassily Kandinsky – White Zig Zag, offset lithograph 1990
Jurgen Peters and Barnett Newman rely on patterns that are born from geometric rules, Octagon V exemplifying crystallized progression and Canto XIII being of a series of works that truly delve into the magic of color interaction as seen through mere adjacent stripes.
And Bill Komoski’s Community Holiday Festival, a signed 1987 silkscreen, and Will Barnet’s Animals & Art, a signed 1979 silkscreen, both benefit from the dancing electricity that springs from high contrast patterning. Komoski’s work has the ambiance and mystique of champagne bubbles up close, and Barnet’s design grounds its buoyancy in the tradition of classic kitchen tiling and textile.
Bill Komoski – Community Holiday Festival, SIGNED silkscreen 1987 Will Barnet – Animals & Art, SIGNED silkscreen 1979