Dusti Bongé felt tip pen drawings

Following the series of joss papers from 1984 and on shared via See Great Art’s partnership with the Dusti Bongé Art Foundation in Biloxi, MS, we next take a look at another series of small works Dusti Bongé created during the 80s. Upcoming will be a set of felt tip pen drawings from 1983, the year before she discovered joss paper.

As always, Dusti Bongé Art Foundation Executive Director Ligia Römer provides the details.

Dusti Bongé, Untitled (Multicolor Rectangles), 1983, felt tip pen on paper, 5 x 8”

What these works, like the joss papers, show is that, as an octogenarian, Dusti was far from done with creating art. Not only that, she continued experimenting with different materials and media, as these felt tip works attest to.

These pieces have bright intense colors, a hallmark of felt tip pens. In many of them Dusti avails herself mostly of the six colors of the color wheel, the primaries blue, red, and yellow and the secondaries purple, orange, and green.

The nature of felt tip pens is very unforgiving. Once you put down a mark there is no going back, not only because of the intensity of the pigment, but also because of the inevitable, highly defined “brush” stroke.

Each mark made, whether narrow or broad, is a very precise one with distinct edges, and each additional mark starts to create a linear pattern with the one next to it. This results in a somewhat striated motif. So, in effect, with felt tips pens the “ink” does not flow very freely and cannot be pushed around on the paper once it has first come into contact with it, thus resulting in more clearly defined compositions.

Now, this was the time when Dusti had started moving away from the overtly active, gestural style of her Abstract Expressionism years toward a kind of lyrical abstraction with more balanced, harmonious, defined forms and colors. These felt tip pen works may be a result of that shift, as well as partly contributing to that shift.

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