Pierian Press Logo Skip to main navigation menu Skip to sub-navigation menu Skip to main content The Pierian Press :: art

Arthur Secunda
Printmaking Process

Pierian Editions
Edition Prices

Complete List of
   Secunda Editions

Change Font Size:
Increase font size Decrease font size Restore default font size
 Introduction to Fine Art Editions by Arthur Secunda
Sentinels of Time, by Arthur Secunda

Works by internationally renowned artist
Arthur Secunda are a continuing study in
visual dynamics.... Many of Secunda's works
are characterized by landscape imagery,
symbolism, and sensuous vibrating color.
Much of the vibrancy one receives
from the colors is created by
[Secunda's] sensitive use of line.

-- Betje Howell, critic for Art Voices
From Howell's review of a Secunda exhibition

3 diamonds used to separate entries

Matters of the Mind: An Introduction

by C. Edward Wall

Pierian Press Fine Art Editions has published seventeen works by internationally known artist, Arthur Secunda. For a complete list of these editions, please see Pierian Press Catalog of Editions.

The artistic statements in the Pierian Press editions by Arthur Secunda may at first seem divergent and unrelated, but like siblings with the same parentage or branches of a tree, these works have a continuity and unity that reflect Secunda's lifetime of parallel developments and personal growth.

Many of Arthur Secunda's earliest works were figurative in nature. While studying with Reginald Marsh during 1946-47 (at the time, Marsh was completing his classic text on anatomy for artists), Secunda would be sent into the Bowery to draw life spontaneously as he found it: drunks vomiting, derelicts sleeping. Ever since, figurative images have been a part of Secunda's unfolding work, although Secunda is driven to celebrate the beauty and higher qualities of life, rather than the ugliness that can destroy our spirit.

In 1950-51, Secunda studied and worked in Mexico City with Agustin Lazo and Jose Ruiz. There he began a series of linocuts that are known as the "Mexican Prints." These prints were produced in very small editions on extremely fragile colored papers. The black lines of the gouged-out images - all figurative in nature - define these sensitive prints.

Subsequently, as Secunda developed and refined his collage techniques and as his imagery began to evolve to include landscapes, the qualities of the paper tear assumed great significance. A sharp upward tear would allow Secunda to abut vibrant colors, but by tearing the paper away from his body, Secunda could create a wide, nuanced white line (revealing the soul of the paper itself), which he could use to separate colors - perhaps depicting snow on a mountain peak in the process. Those torn lines became an essential part of Secunda's collages and prints. (See also Secunda's personal comments on the torn line in his reflections on Night Flight.)

In the late 1970s, Secunda began experimenting with electric wood routers. Visually concentrating on the subject he was drawing, Secunda would mentally guide his hands to capture the image with the router. He would then paint the routed wood panels, often accentuating the routed-out lines in white, black, or other bold colors.

Beginning with the linocuts of the earliest 1950s and extending through the collages, prints, paintings, and routed wood pieces of the present day, the line has been an element of continuity in Secunda's work. (See the related comments by William S. Rubin and others elsewhere on this website.)

The line and other elements of continuity are inherent in the works in this collection: the torn paper line as used in I Think of My Old Home and Sentinels of Time; the routed line as employed in Etude, Jubilation, and Nocturne; the figurative works (reflecting those same linear qualities) as expressed in Concentration, Contemplation, Enigma, and Intuition; photography and photo-collage techniques (which are referenced briefly elsewhere in this catalog) as incorporated in To Live in High Places and Kind of Blue or Body and Soul; and landscapes - all are integral links in the continuity and unity of Secunda's work.

There is one additional major element of unity in these works: they all deal with emotions, dreams, and values - with matters of the mind.

Jump to top of page  Top Link to this page  Link to this page