2. 191 Westminster Street

John Riedel

Selected Collage-Constructions,1974-1980

In 1974, I first worked in collage, with a series of small pieces as an offshoot of the abstract painting I was doing at the time. In 1975, after a trip to Italy, I began to paint from reality, and also memory, landscapes and cityscapes of Pawtucket.

After a few years I reached an impasse and constructed a collage of the same name to express my sense of frustration with my painting at his time. This came about largely because of interesting things being thrown out by the neighbor next door on garbage night. A few of the objects included in this work were a broken road block sign, a picture of myself painting, and one of my old palettes.

However it wasn't until the winter of 1978 in Providence, that I began to work on a series of collages, to the exclusion of other art work.

The sizes of these pieces ranged from 4 ft x5 ft to 1 1/2 ft square. Toward the end, these collage constructions also grew to be three dimensional, having a depth of 3 to 5 inches. I restricted myself to working only with found objects, whether it was paper, (including old book end papers), cloth, metal, plastic, wood, etc. In the early stages of the work, it was important not to fasten anything down. This could be done later in the process, to keep the work in a state of flux.

From 1982 to the present I have continued to paint from reality; however, the arrangement or composition of the paintings has in many cases, increasingly resembled the later collage-constructions.

This is a result of an increasing feeling that separate objects are only bridges to the things around them. In painting, as in collage, separate objects can become areas of color working to mutually strengthen each other.

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