Artwork by Charles Pachter,  Painted Flag

Charles Pachter
Painted Flag

acrylic on canvas
signed and dated “ ‘00” on the reverse; a letter from the artist discussing the significance of the flag accompanies this piece
16 x 16 ins ( 40.6 x 40.6 cms )

Auction Estimate: $12,000.00$10,000.00 - $12,000.00

Price Realized $7,500.00
Sale date: November 22nd 2016

Acquired directly from the artist
Private Collection, Toronto
Bogomila Welsh-Ovcharov, “Charles Pachter”, Toronto, 1992, pages 71, 84-87, semi-colour plates 88-91 for other works from the “The Painted Flag” series
Throughout his career, Pachter has taken Canada’s history as a lead source of inspiration to create iconic tongue-in-cheek pop imagery of Canadian national symbols. The artist worked on a series of painted Canadian flags after studying the effects of light and wind on the flag. Constructing a flagpole on his Oro farm in 1980, Pachter observed the varying forms created by the billowing fabric and documented the configurations with photographs as reference for his “The Painted Flag” series. Painted against a flat black background, the flag itself remains the focus as a singular auratic object representing a layered, complicated and highly subjective national history and identity.

In a letter accompanying the painting, the artist writes: “This painting is about the flag, but also about wind and light and the mysterious feelings that are evoked when the flag is in motion.” Nationalism and a sense of patriotism has always been a recurring theme in the artist’s body of work. Particularly in the 1980s when the artist first began this series, the repatriation of the Canadian Constitution gave the artist a charged socio-political landscape to draw inspiration from. Whereas American counterparts, like Jasper Johns, used the flag as a vehicle to explore formal abstraction rather than convey a sort of national pride, Pachter sought to capture both impressionist qualities of light and shadow and the feelings of national sentiment evoked by the Canadian flag.

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Charles Pachter