Patrick Francis is a prolific and successful painter, with a strong style and highly confident approach. His form of portrait painting employs methods used in times long past: a directorial approach in the studio, the deconstruction of the subject, bold and expressive use of colour, and an extreme simplification of the pictorial plane.
Francis’ use of colour recalls the intensity of modernist movements such as Fauvism and German Expressionism: stripping back an image to its main components,
Francis directs studio assistants to select the exact colour required for each section, adding these to more detailed under-drawings. This selective process indicates that the artist places great importance on colour, its emotive value and the power it holds within the image itself. For Francis, colour is loaded with meaning: it holds the key to the characters he paints, conveying their state of mind, their roles and their situation to the viewer. Form and contours are flattened, becoming bright planes of colour. However, subtleties also exist in the edges of these colour blocks, gentle gradations giving way to sudden changes that catch the eye and hint at the hidden depths of perspective and detail within the layers of paint.
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