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About Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam (CAPA)

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About Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam (CAPA) Freddy Flores Knistoff Amsterdam, 2016 Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam is undoubtedly a type of…
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About Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam (CAPA) Freddy Flores Knistoff Amsterdam, 2016 Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam is undoubtedly a type of experimental painting. It is why in a cloth (or paint) two or more painters can work. Which is unusual, but working together automatically is what makes the difference from other forms of collective work. This type of automatic painting won members here in Amsterdam at the beginning of the nineties and in a first stage, constituted a very large group, international, culminating with the exhibition held in 1997 at the Museum of Contemporary Art of the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil. Between these years, the paintings were exhibited in Paris, Hanover, Amsterdam, and other cities, and in general in other exhibition halls linked to the international Surrealist movement and the Phases movement in Paris. In fact the exhibition of Sao Paulo was an exhibition of Phases as a commemoration of the thirty years of the Austral Group of Phases, and whose title was Phases, Surrealism and Contemporaneity. Subsequent to this exhibition, the group was divided in two as it has remained until today.Left to right, Dave Bobroske, James Burns, Jan Giliam, Freddy Flores Knistoff Rik's studio in Amsterdam 1996.This original group of collective automatic painting began to identify itself with the name of CAPA (Collective Automatic Painting Amsterdam) and until today maintains this name, only that at the moment are two different groups that have continued participating in exhibitions usually linked to the Surrealism. This type of painting is based on the fact that the relationship between the artists is not academic (teacher and disciple) but a level of relative equality of participants where the most important is the concentration in the development of the painting which is doing without following the directions of any of the participating artists. In fact it must be said that the best working climateis, the relative silence of the participants in relation to the painting being done, avoid talking about it while working, that any observation, can cut the thread of the work that The other participant does. So according to my experience the best is the participation of two or three artists at a time, because beyond that number of artists is enormously complicated work. It only derives from collective work without any interest. For what is here. The objective is not to experiment with the participation of other artists, but to make a painting that is no longer the painting of only artist, but another painting that appears as a discovery when not being; The result of a single individual and his creation, how is this possible? So that in collective automatic painting an artist is allowed to work on what the other has painted, or failing that the other works on what he paints one, and that he can work at the same time as well, and this is the new thing, Remarkable, that there are artists who agree to paint this way. We will say that this is a spirit of collaboration and not of competition. A spirit of dialogue through painting, through the image, through expression, and not through words or explanations of what is painted. A dialogue exists even with the movement of the participants in front of the canvas, when it is a large canvas. As well as other amazing coincidences. I think that the participants have a certain vision of what they are painting, they can follow the development of a painting and this is because of automatism, after all, automatic painting is not knowing what is being painted. Why it is to enter the painting and many times modify what there already is. Painters of Phases and CoBra, like Asger Jorn, Enrico Baj and Antonio Saura, have good modifications, especially of paint on painting. However, in a painting modified with painting, there are already at least two painters and although the process is not the same, it is seen that two painters can coexist in a homogeneous way, even if they belong to different times. But they are one painting, which is what matters here. What is interesting in collective automatic painting is that it has to allow this process of modification that does not have to go ad infinitum, it is enough that these modifications can be made and allowed, only in the act, the event of the moment. I believe, therefore, that although there may be a relation of this type of painting to the exquisite corpses of surrealist tradition, it is something different. In exquisite corpses one does not see what the other has painted or drawn. Although in the end they mix different artists in a single work. More for the pure chance of the mix. In automatic collective painting you see what you are painting. Is not the same. Where there is always a degree of surprise. Where does it come from? Not ignorance, but knowledge of what others have done in the same fabric. The moment you paint you see what others paint and it is absurd not to see it. CoBrA artists also made collective automatic painting, which is why they were related to them in the article by Graham Birtwliste in the exhibition catalog of CoBrA, Collection Peter Stauvesand, 1993. Galerie Museum Amstelle, Amsterdam. Some painters also did Of the School of New York, in the workshop of Roberto Matta after the arrival of the surrealists exiled to the USA. I do not know if Roberto Matta did any collective automatic work when he was together in Italy with artists from Phases and CoBrA in Albisola in 1953, after returning from New York, Asger Jorn continued with a group of collective automatic painting in Italy until the mid 1970s , it seems to me. In any case, CoBrA artists continued to work collectively, especially on paper. Somehow in the early 1990s, automatic collective painting, here in Amsterdam, was nothing more than a continuation of things that happened in the same automatic painting, of a certain agitation. It was normal to do it, it was a very fructiferous period where we were convinced that we had to experiment with the same automatism. That was and still is today. Which can be transmitted to other groups or painters, no doubt, but we must keep the objective as soon as a painting is done. Painting is the ultimate expression of automatism. And that is the benefit that our experiment has to give us, to see it, to demonstrate it in a manner as noble as does the painting itself.
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