Uplifting and energetic, Daniel Paul Peterson’s work is a playfully abstract exploration of expression, memory and emotion, a palimpsest of movement, colour and form. Palest pinks, soft greys, and the glint of pale winter sun nest with cobalt blue, ochre and steel: powerful, intent-filled marks splay across the canvas, and each work begs an emotion, a reaction, to its fluid freeform beauty.
His work radiates energy, a joyful, excitement that captures both tension and release, imperfection and elegance. Up close, each mark exists in its own space, colours and forms connected yet distinct. Step back, and the work takes on another dimension, the interconnectivity and energy between the elements of the work fusing to create something greater still.
Daniel Paul Peterson’s creative practice considers the way humanity relates to the natural world in a psycho-spiritual sense, and how we visualise our memories and create meaning through these interpretations. Using mark-making techniques and colour choices that allow him to create from a subconscious state (as far as possible), and working with acrylics, oil sticks and handmade charcoal, he invites unpredictability and chaos into his work.
He explains this process as a form of mediation and submission, allowing of the paint to ‘takeover’ as he works:
“When I set out to explore an idea I start with a layering of multiple base colours and controlled forms until I feel the paint needs to ‘take over’. At this point I flick, drip and pour marks in a way that allows the colours to land where they may, and from there, I brush or move the gesture to guide it towards the story the piece is telling.”
This ceding of control by the artist to the materials he uses creates a tension between order and chaos that is the core principle of Daniel Paul Peterson’s art, and it is this that reflects his fascination into the way we seek patterns in nature and our lives.
“I want to create space for people to notice their own thoughts and reactions – moments like this are transcendent”.
Raised and educated on Naarm (Melbourne), Daniel Paul Peterson lives and paints on Dharug and Gundungurra Country, in and around the Blue Mountains, this ancient land reflected in his colour palettes and the unbridled form his work takes.