I remember the late Walter Murch, one of America’s foremost realist painters of this century, saying to a student during a life drawing class: “Don’t ever be concerned with literal accuracy – your responsibility is not to the subject, it’s to the painting or drawing you are making”.
The delight which I am sure all viewers of Geoff Jackson’s landscape paintings – on show at galerie two – will feel, is that the works are not merely literal transcriptions of local scenery, but are as deeply considered and successfully accomplished as paintings as they are a record of one man’s attachment to nature.
The works dated 1969, show marked development in relation to the earlier pieces. Compare, for example, the slackness of the drawing in Sabi Valley with the linear tensions achieved in Gum Trees; the opacity of the background in Road to Burma Valley with the sense of space and air in Matopos, Early Spring.
Mr. Jackson seems to be moving in some of the new paintings to successful exploration of essentially abstract problems. Trees and Rocks plays with the contrasts between erect and rotund shapes; On the Fringe of the Matopos succeeds as an exciting venture in vibrant rhythms.
Color, generally, is subtle. It sets the pervasive atmosphere of the show, which is gentle, accomplished and totally sincere. Que Que District glows with rather more highly-pitched autumn colours. It is a gem.
The exhibition deserves whole-hearted support.