I started using bleach as a medium almost exclusively some twenty years ago (1997). For me it was as a Eureka moment and I haven’t looked back. Eureka, because of the golden splash of colors and hues it has given me to work with and as I sat down, (I actually sat down), it seemed the color of my future.
Most artists use tools of choice to reach out to touch others with a set of truths or beliefs and feelings about a universal is-ness as it is known to the artist. It is that way for me.
I use a bamboo skewer to apply bleach to black paper which continues to blow me away as I see the results unfold.
In 1994 I was informed by a friend that the state of California was named because a black Amazon queen named Califia who ruled the island of California which lay ‘just west of the Territorial Paradise’. Little was known of America in those days but subsequent studies have shown California was an island millions of years ago but shifting tectonic plates shoved the island against the continental mass and helped form the Big valley’ and the Sierra mountains.
When the Spanish writer Garci Hernan Montalvo wrote his story of Califia he placed her on that island. It sparked the hell out of my curiosity, and I searched out the book written by Montalvo and finally located it in Australia.
I have since tried to turn that story into a cottage industry. Lack of space prevents me from diving deeper into her story, but I have written much about her in magazines, flyers, presentations, even contributing to a play and an animation.
I will probably continue to use bleach because there is still much to learn. Unless I have another ‘Eureka moment’, that is. Perhaps the medium really does choose the artist. I’ll have to think on that.
The Arthur Wright