Neo Minimal Image Making


Creating my language as an image maker is an evolving endeavour.  I would describe my work as ‘neo-minimalist’.

What do I mean by using this expression? I use it to draw on the history of modernism and the exuberant distractions of post-modernism in the Twentieth Century. Neo-mininalism provides for me the language, or vocabulary, to frame the finely crafted simplicity of things but also my deep respect for nature.  The form and materiality of both the human hand in constructs and nature’s intervention can be seized by making images.

As a new minimalist I seek to distil, not distract.  I endeavour to dwell upon and re-see the familiar, to offer the viewer the chance to re-look.

Our new age is one of simple austerity; the counterpoint to old overindulgence. The expression of simplicity is to watch the shadows dance slowly across a smooth, white rendered surface.  To meditate on the richness of nature that circles our world.

By distilling I do not seek to deceive, but I will invite the viewer of an image to ask themselves questions as to the absence of things, or insert their own thoughts and selves into the image.

I have selected a pair of images from John Pawson’s writings about the ‘omissions of the inessentials’ (1996: 7,181. Minimum.  London: Phaidon) as they express the elegance of line, form, shadow and material.   


On the left the simple but exquisitely crafted stone enfilade in the Chaco Canyon, USA, on the right the stark ground plan of Waverley Abbey, the first Cistercian foundation in England.

Philip Singleton


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