Winged Figure in a Vortex Collage

Winged Figure in a Vortex Collage
1992, oil on canvas collage elements mounted on acrylic painted panel
30 x 20 in. (frame: 31 1/2 x 21 1/2 in.)

In 1990, after working with acrylics for about 20 years, I decided to do a painting using oils again. Even though it progressed well I soon became frustrated by the slow drying time of the oils and decided to set the canvas aside. Months later I started another painting using the same image but this time in acrylics. I completed the painting, Winged Figure in a Vortex, the same year.

Winged Figure in a Vortex
1990, acrylic on canvas
66 x 72 in.

Two years later I revisited the uncompleted oil version. But because the acrylic version was successful I had no desire to complete the one in oil. In studying the piece however I thought about how much I liked various elements and how it would be a loss to either paint over them or discard the canvas itself. That led me to decide to cut out the elements I liked and to reassemble, at least some of them, in a collage.

To create the collage I knew I needed a support for the cutouts. Having long enjoyed icon paintings I decided to use gold metallic acrylic paint to create a ground on a wood panel. I then carefully painted the edges of the cutouts, arranged them on the panel and, after settling on a final composition, glued them to its surface. To finish the piece, and to enhance its icon paintings feel, I framed the panel and used the same gold metallic color to paint the frame.

Though the collage does not contain wings or a vortex I thought it intriguing to retain the title of, and connection to, the original composition.

- Brian Mains, 2017