Close up of three lids with paint, sitting on a brown cardboard background. One lid is orange, the other one yellow and the third one black.

What it is about colour?

Colour determines our lives yet it escapes words. I think that is what attracts me most about colour, its absolute power. When the colours are right life is right. Like being in tune with the universe. When the colours are wrong things get out of sync. To me colour is a fundamental aspect of a thing. Two chairs with the same design and different colours are more different than two chairs in the same colour and different designs.

For years my relationship with colour has been more obvious to others than to me. I was surprised when a painting teacher said: “Someone as obsessed with colour as you are…” or when a programmer I worked with said: “When I first saw you working for 2 or 3 hours on the colour of a one pixel line for a website I thought you were insane”. I wasn’t even aware that I was doing it. Now I have finally understood how fundamental colour is for me.

Colour is a kind of philosophical knowledge whose truths cannot be hidden. I like truths that cannot be hidden. Colour is also simultaneously language and content. I use colour to think about things that I don’t have words for. It is that irrational, or in my view, meta-rational nature of colour, that attracts me to it. 

Colour is often associated with the feminine, and therefore seen as unimportant. Those who want to dominate the world do so in white, black and gray. Where there is tyranny, color is missing. 

Colour is power, and withdrawing it is a kind of oppression. Harmonious colour combinations, like the ones found in nature, are in themselves a type of freedom.

Colour is also fun to play with. A little more pigment here, a touch of paella colouring there… and a fraction of a shade makes all the difference. When I get the colour for a painting or on a piece of fabric right, I grow. I physically feel how I expand and I deepen at the same time. It is that completeness of colour that attracts me to it. The way it is both matter and spirit, power and subtlety, there and not there. Nothing else comes even close.