Steve Mumford is an old friend who has made a real name for himself as a War Artist. He has traveled several times to Iraq, and recently recently posted a new installment of work that he did while in Mosul. There's a great directness to this work. I feel like I know more about what it looks and feels like there from his watercolors than from photographs. It's a real irony that in a world where seemingly everything is photographed, there remains a surprising immediacy to a watercolor sketch. Maybe it's precisely because of the mediated quality of the work. We look at it, and are made conscious of the presence of the artist-- the jumpy line, the splash of color, the quick notation. We think about the time involved in capturing the scene. In these watercolors, we imagine ourselves there. We feel the heat of the day, wonder what it would be like, and think about the scene outside the borders of the drawing.
A link to Steve's work is in the 'Links' column on the right.