Robert Kingston’s paintings are part of his own lineage of abstraction that has evolved over some twenty years. These paintings are about painting. Kingston’s work has always arisen from an earnest search for resolution in a range of gestures, movements and erasures. The appearance and meaning of the resolution has developed over years in the meandering progression of the creative process.
Kingston's current chapter of work continues his investigation into the possibilities of paint. The labors are personal, but also come from a place of acutely studied history of art, design and music. Notions of Cy Twombly and Paul Klee, among others, slightly register, but while Kingston embraces this history, his paintings remain clearly contemporary, considered and decidedly personal.
Similar to a musical composition, Kingston slowly creates his paintings by building on and modifying motifs applied in previous layers. He embraces improvisational gestures and incidents of dripping and streaking paint. At times the paint is controlled and then allowed again to find gravity and is then contained again. Among this rich layering and smudging are fits and starts of lines, doodles and sketches. This action occurs in so many layers, that some images are barely perceivable, giving us insight into Kingston’s thought process and leaves you searching for more clues. On the thin top surface that floats over the deep, hazy spaces of the paintings are hard-lined, organic shapes of color and distinct line drawings that conjure a quirky aggregate of ancient / scientific / industrial hieroglyphs.
All this activity occurs on textured fields of color that vary from off white to brick red, black or blue. The colors and compositions shift from placid to energetic, structured to improvised, sober to playful. The paintings are a steady, engrossing read that gradually reveal their history and resolve.