|Paul Doran goes further than before, exploiting the characteristics of oil. He pushes his work into a syntactical rediscovery of painting as a complex interplay between the visual, apparatus, process and discourse. He gives us sumptuous masses of smeared or scooped layers of colour, inviting us to reconstruct the work. Wisps of paint hanging off the extreme edges act as pointers, telling how he catches falling excesses and then recycles them back into the work. On occasion he splices into the surface skins, allowing the insides to spew out like lava. Where the canvas is abandoned, the structures become organic, shaped by clinging polyps or furrows of extruded paint straight from the tube.
Doran takes the discourse of reflexive painting itself under closer scrutiny through critical experimentation. In the fractured, impure nature of the paint there is felt an immediacy, complexity and paradoxically an inability to ever nail the work in one viewing.
Doran's paintings are intimate in scale, typically measuring 30.5 x 30.5 cms. They are painterly constructions of heavily worked skeins of paint which the artist trowels wet across the canvas. Doran paints with a rich and brilliant palette of oil colours which, when applied overtop one another, creates an amazingly dense, almost sculptural skin to the canvas. In some instances, the paint extends out and over the canvas board by several impastoed inches. Aidan Dunne has described Doran's work as, «process painting ... in which we are prompted to regard the painting itself, and the discipline of its making, as the substance of the work.»
As Doran himself explains:
«The edges of the canvases spill over with paint residues. These residues affect the material presence of the painting as object, as the paint no longer represents a window onto an interior space but comes off the edges of the canvas interrupting the works exterior space and thus that of the viewers.»