The Tower of Babel (revised essay + images of paintings)

Loydell, Rupert ORCID logoORCID: (2022) The Tower of Babel (revised essay + images of paintings). Mercurius, none. ISSN none

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Abstract / Summary

In the summer of 2010 I found myself collecting and downloading reproductions of works of art that referenced the Tower of Babel which I pasted into a new sketchbook. These included well-known pictures such as those by Gustave Doré and Bruegel as well as more contemporary sculptures and paintings that I found relevant to the topic, including many tarot cards of ‘the tower’, along with photographic details of brickwork and holes in buildings from around the world. Also, in a not uncommon act of synchronicity, my mother produced my copy of The Children’s Bible, which I had not seen since the 1970s. This contains a memorable picture of the tower under construction amongst building site rubble and labour.

By the end of the summer, I had painted a series of 12 towers on A1 paper, another 12 ‘Small Towers’, this time around a foot square in format, and a number of studies and sketchbook pages on the same theme. The series, mainly executed in a mixture of oil paint, oil sticks and coloured inks, included towers that were recognisable from the images I had collected but also more abstract grids and patterns, dots and squares in collision with both themselves and free-flowing inks dribbled onto the page.

Like many artists I spend as much time considering my work, often making studies from it, after the event as before. I draw my own finished work, I think about where it might sit within not only my own output but also how it related to my contemporaries and predecessors. This essay is research after the event, a collation of others’ responses to the topic and also my own retrospective thoughts.

Item Type: Article
ISSN: none
Subjects: Writing & Journalism > Creative Writing
Arts > Fine Art
Arts > Religion
Arts > Symbolism, allegory, myth & legend
Writing & Journalism
Courses by Department: The School of Writing & Journalism > English & Writing
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Rupert Loydell
Date Deposited: 03 Jan 2023 09:56
Last Modified: 03 Jan 2023 09:56


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