Lets Walk to the Middle of the Ocean, Policeman, Beat the Devil - Art Essay Sample

Date:  2021-06-22 03:53:56
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Lets Walk to the Middle of the Ocean

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The painting Lets Walk to the middle of the Ocean was created by Mark Bradford in 2015 using paper, acrylic paint, and acrylic varnish on canvas material. Just as the name suggests, the subject of the painting is crossing the middle of the ocean seen by the way in which the painting presents a view of the ocean water at some point figures like boats which aid the crossing are viewed. The image reflects some parts of the land as well as the mass of water representing the ocean. The fading blue effect on some areas of the painting is waters of the sea while the brownish effect represents the land. The outstanding combination of the colors on canvas together with curved and straight lines and the light use of light gives the image a clear view ("Mark Bradford. Let's Walk to the Middle of the Ocean. 2015 | MoMA", n.d.).

To briefly describe the image by Bradford, it appears that the painting occupies the whole canvas. The geometry of the image includes one rectangular and triangular shapes representing the part of the ocean and land respectively. There are several straight lines and horizontal lines that dominate the canvas of the painting appearing mostly on the part that represents the land mass. Also, several curved lines run along the mass of water. Most of the painting on the canvas occupies the positive space represented with bright colors meaning there is the use of light while the negative space appears along the edges of the canvas with the dark and dull appearance. The form of the painting seems to be rough and unfinished due to its appearance.

I love boat riding, and most of my free time I spent riding boats. This is one reason that made me chose this painting. It reminded me of the best moments that I always have while on the ocean. It is an appealing image that one can easily relate with since its theme is crossing over the sea.


This painting was created by Kerry James Marshall using synthetic polymer paint on PVC panel with Plexi frame in and was on view in 2015 at the MOMA. The subject of the painting was to shoe the deaths of the African-American people who were not armed throughout the US at the hands of the armed police and to show that it was bad. In describing the image, the positive space occupies the figure of a black police officer perched on his car while the negative space comprises a dark appearance and some stars implying that it was possible at night. The significance of this was to show how the African American people were discriminated and left alone in the dark ("Kerry James Marshall. Untitled (policeman). 2015 | MoMA", n.d.).

The image involves geometry where there are circular shapes involved like the cap of the police officer. Also, curved lines are used most specifically representing the figure of the policeman. His legs and arms are both in positions that make the garments to create curved lines. Furthermore, the texture of the painting appeared to be smooth and finished all around the canvas. I believe this picture falls into the Surrealism period of the art movement because this period was characterized by strange paintings that pursued to find more about human consciousness, feeling, and what they prefer rather than overturning it. The theme of this image goes well in lien with this seeking to show that all people are equal. I also find this more touching and the suffering I once saw a young man being brutally beaten up by police made me choose this painting.

Beat the Devil

Beat the Devil is a painting that was created by oil on linen in the year 2008 Jacqueline Humphries. It is one of the fascinating and difficult to understand paintings. The theme of this painting is an expression of suchness. By having a glance at the appearance image, linen is full of figures that are coiled and concentrated. As the name of the image suggests, it seems as if the coiled figures are expressing the action of beating the devil. For instance, Jacqueline was trying to pass the message that the evil is wrong and people should try to fight it ("Jacqueline Humphries. Beat the Devil. 2008 | MoMA", n.d.).

The positive space is the whole linen where the painting dominates. Light is well used as there are some parts of the image that are illuminated to contrast it from the dark coiled objects that appear to be hitting the devil. There is no much of geometry that is used since on the image. Aside from this, the image this work seems to be in the Abstract Expressionism in the era of modern art. It is a period that expresses the state of mind of the viewers to understand the image deeply. What drove me to choose this painting is the fact that I wanted to understand the meaning of the painting. A friend of mine had once challenged me to explain the significance of a splatter-paint image, and when I came across this painting it drove me to look deeper and find what it means.

Finally, I feel that all these images are similar in the sense that they are paintings. All the works share certain similarities of art like geometry, line, color, space, and texture. However, they both have different themes and a subject line that they revolve around.


Jacqueline Humphries. Beat the Devil. 2008 | MoMA. The Museum of Modern Art. Retrieved 1 June 2017, from https://www.moma.org/collection/works/130778?locale=en

Kerry James Marshall. Untitled (policeman). 2015 | MoMA. The Museum of Modern Art. Retrieved 1 June 2017, from https://www.moma.org/collection/works/199591?locale=en

Mark Bradford. Let's Walk to the Middle of the Ocean. 2015 | MoMA. The Museum of Modern Art. Retrieved 1 June 2017, from https://www.moma.org/collection/works/199580?locale=en

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