Threshold

When I was an art student, I was taught about color threshold. While exploring color mixtures there is a point where one color becomes another. This point could be a debateable. For example, a color can appear yellow but depending on its proximity to another color, the same color can appear to be green. A precise measured chroma does not guarantee a precise definition.

The artist Richard Cramer, was one of my mentors at University. For many years he focused on making abstract paintings that explored color thresholds. While he later continued the same maticulous approach, his subject changed. First he introduced abstract characters and later narrative scenes emerged.

Richard Cramer, Redbank (detail on the left side) 1975, Acrylic on canvas, 96 x 127 inches.

How Cramer moved from geometric abstraction to a focus on imagery involved a change in thought, a tiping point, or threshold where one type of work led to another. A more recent example of his work can be found below.

Drawing by Richard Cramer, Circa 2000’s

While I am reminded of many other thresholds, even a record titled On the Threshold of a Dream, the birth of my child this summer highlighted another transitional state. Before he was born preparation involved gathering clothes and new furniture. When I saw his new clothes washed and hanging to dry, it felt like a moment on the threshold of birth. However, when the baby arrived under emergency circumstances, I also came to realize that certain thresholds do not have forgone conclusions.

While the outcomes of events can be uncertain, change is a constant and faith can be a source of stability. Fortunately the little boy crossed the threshold, though I know each day is a challenge of its own kind.

3 thoughts on “Threshold

  1. Thanks for sharing – your appreciation for Richard, a context of your understanding of life and the precarious balance of change and stability in your life as a father to Szymon.

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