This piece by Tony Saunders is one that I could look at forever. It has moved from one wall to another over the years, sometimes sharing space with the work of other artists, sometimes going solo. It used to live on a group wall that at the moment has two works (at left) by James Biederman, and two more (at right) by Tony, all four in a wonderful conversation together. Full disclosure, I live with Tony, and have work in my collection by many other artists and friends as well. I can honestly say that I have been collecting Tony’s work since 2001, when we had a date where I saw his artwork for the first time and understood with a shock that I was meeting a true artist and kindred spirit in abstract art.
I am sharing this piece, called Receiver, because of its timelessness. Everything speaks to me: the gesture, the rich yet monochromatic color, the abandon and the control. It has overtones of both sculpture and photography. The element of play is very important in Tony’s work, thus the painted and collaged elements that are arrived at through trial and error. Somehow everything comes together in Receiver: the central-ish and super graphic inset is both floating but integral, focusing and tying together the lovely movement of the main gesture which could almost read as a figurative element, reminiscent of Dubuffet.
It’s rare that a work conveys subtlety and strength in so convincing a way to me: thus I never tire of looking at this piece.
June 9, 2020
“The Collector” is an ongoing series in which I ask people to talk about a painting or a drawing they own. See other installments here.
J.J. Murphy / Katherine Bradford Of all the paintings in our collection, this one arrived at a perfect moment—right before the pandemic ruptured our lives so significantly. I have always believed that what hangs on […]