Surreal Abstract Elephant Bone With Red Rectangles

Elephant bone with red rectangles against a green background. Surreal abstract art by Joseph Westrupp.

The title of this picture is Sentinelia in Absinthe, with absinthe being a reference to the background color (that’s what comes to mind for me when I look at it. Well the drink itself, but also a burning throat, and hazy memories).

Arguably there’s no right or wrong composition in art, especially for abstract. But I have a strong sense of what I like—when my vision isn’t quite fulfilled, it really grates. Initially for this image all the elements you see were in place, but something was awry, and I couldn’t work out what.

I spent a ridiculous amount of time juggling the composition, then made a ridiculously minor change (I moved the top rectangle up the bone a bit), and it just clicked.

I don’t think I’ve ever had such a minor detail make such a huge difference before, but there’s always a very particular moment everything comes together. It’s one of the best feelings when that happens.

This is the second of three, there’s also a black and white iteration called Sentinelia in Black, and the original, Sentinelia, has black rectangles on a blue background.

Canvases & Giclee Prints

You can get archival-quality (fade-resistant and designed to last) prints at Fine Art America. Options include framed fine art paper, canvases, posters, and metal prints.

Stay Up To Date

If you liked this, sign up to my newsletter and I'll let you know about new work.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *