The Passing Present, Oil on linen, 45 x 35 cm, 2014
© Nathan Jones Art
In common with my current practice, The Passing Present suggests a fluid boundary between the real and the unreal. Ultimately, there is little that can be said with certainty about this painting: the subject is neither flesh nor stone, it floats without body, location or purpose, and there is no validating narrative to offer a foothold for interpretation. This mutability and ambiguity is further suggested by the fluid paint handling, which implies a movement that is at odds with the subject’s stillness. The paint itself, at points thin, delicate and descriptive, occasionally ruptures into rough, impasto abstraction – a painterly language that is thoroughly hostile to a singular version of reality. Although it is offset by contrasting flares of warmth, the palette is dominated by an otherworldly blue – this further removes the figure from our present moment. As the title implies, the painting draws attention to the passing of time, while also blurring boundaries between the past and the present.
Nathan Jones is a London artist, practice-based researcher and, formerly, a postgraduate student at University of the Arts London. For full works and details of his practice, see www.nathanjonesart.co.uk