Bradley Walker Tomlin

Bradley Walker Tomlin

Bradley Walker Tomlin

Bradley Walker Tomlin

Excerpt

Bradley Tomlin, like his paintings, possessed a tensile--and at times precarious--balance that covered an anguished sense of alternatives. His tone, muted, graded, could change to caprice.

Wearied by the already experienced and the flaccid, yet bound by a gift of proportion, his spontaneity was earned. The reworked and scored painting surface gradually exposed vein and nerve, and this was the cost. The stroke, which tends to leap, is nevertheless held on the plane--like the seal on a letter. Since his temperament insisted on the impossible pleasure of controlling and being free at the same moment, his plasticity and its demands are quickening.

Tomlin's passion did not distort the surface: an innate feeling for amounts prevented him from becoming an "expressionist." Often wry, he never lost his fineness of edge. In the more "intimate" or "written" paintings thought became the hand, releasing lean rhythms that did not forget the resistance of an earlier cubist space. By choice denying himself certain luxuries of color, he would use, perhaps, a drab olive, a mustard, an old white.

An heraldic elegy is his his form, and this elegance is as nimble as it is grave.

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