In a visually saturated world, artists can be faced with seemingly endless possibilities and choices. In response, Martin Creed imposes simple rules on his creativity. He might create a painting using only paintbrushes bought in a multi-pack, or make only one mark a day with the same felt-tip pen until the whole paper surface is covered. Repetition, stacks, and intervals are familiar motifs in his work, along with ascending and descending structures. For Work No.1273, Creed has made five single brush marks using a palette derived from the Olympic colours. The marks are arranged in an ascending form that seems to represent an extended podium offering places beyond first, second and third. Creed’s image can be seen as expressing his respect for the excellence of all competing Olympic sportsmen and women.
The artist explains: "Putting on an exhibition is like saying ‘hey, look at this, isn't it great'. But if there is no one thing that you think is greater than any other one thing, what can you do? Choosing and making decisions is very difficult. It is a can of worms on a stormy sea in a hall of mirrors on a slippery slope to a bottomless pit. This work was made as a poster for the London 2012 Olympics. When I went to the shop to buy a brush to paint with I couldn't decide which one to get and so I got a whole packet of them and did the painting with them all."
- Artwork Details: 76 x 60cm
Frame, 82.3 x 66.5 x 4cm
- Edition: of 250
- Material description: Lithograph on 300gsm Somerset White Tub sized paper. Produced by Paupers Press, London.
- Credit line: © the artist
- Accession number: ACC30/2011