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articles by
todd
camplin
PAUL FONTAINE
at Martin Museum of Art  through august 25
by Todd Camplin

One of my artist friends in Waco told me that the Paul Fontaine retrospective at the Martin Museum
of Art was a must see exhibition. So, I found my way to Baylor University to visit their fine arts building
which had a theater, the visual arts department, and the Martin Museum. I am baffled by the
small size of the museum at such a prestigious and large University like Baylor.
museum. Waco really needs a museum that showcases the culture of central Texas. A free
When I look at purely non-objective paintings on canvas, I tend to focus on just the paint, the
texture, or the surface of the canvas. Especially during the Modernist period, abstract artists
attempted to create a more universal language that transcended time and space. Fontaine
he lived seeped into the work. Maybe more so than other artists who didn’t move around the
globe as much as Fontaine, because I can see how his life in each country changed his work
dramatically. In Germany, geometric shapes and darker more introspective paintings were
produced, whereas, in Mexico his paintings have brighter colors, thicker textures, and
less defined shapes. Even with the move to Texas, subtle changes in colors and composition
crept in to distinguish a change of his surroundings.
Spring, c. 1984. Acrylic on canvas, 47 x 59 in. (119.4 x 150 cm). Private collection.