The Power of Minimalism in Art

Time-to-Rise-Brian-Parker-Artist An image of the Venetian island of Murano.

Today I want to talk about an essential part of my artistic journey – the power of minimalism in my work.


If you’ve already encountered my paintings, you might have noticed that my pieces have an inherent simplicity.  That’s because I’m a firm believer in the beauty and power of minimalism.  Inspired by my scientific background, my art seeks to evoke emotions and connections through the simplest forms possible.

“It takes a long time to make it simple.” – David Hockney

In art, minimalism isn’t about lack of detail or effort.  On the contrary, it’s about intentional reduction.  It’s about stripping away the non-essential elements to reveal the essential.  This minimalist approach is reflected in my choice of colours, lines, shapes, and even my tools.  For example, the use of Fabriano Artistico paper to Da Vinci acrylic brushes, each item I use is carefully chosen to aid in the creation of clean, crisp lines – a defining characteristic of my work.


Minimalism is an outcome of my relentless pursuit of simplicity.  It’s about saying more by using less.  It’s not the absence of something but rather the perfect amount of something.  When I paint, my focus is on outlines, edges, and patterns rather than volumes.  It’s the idea of capturing the essence of an object or a scene with the minimum of distraction.  A reduced palette of flat colours and defined lines helps me to convey my vision of the composition.


Now, you might wonder, “why minimalism?”  I’d have to say that the answer lies back in my early years in the 60’s when I became aware of the screen prints that were prevalent then.  At that time screen prints weren’t produced using photographic method, screens were hand cut or painted.  This meant you had to keep it simple; simple shapes and few colours because every extra colour meant an extra screen had to be produced.  Also all the colours were usually opaque inks and that meant all the colours were flat and even.  This style of work had enormous appeal for me and this is reflected in my paintings, although I have a much greater freedom in use of colour.  In 1969, I was the art director for the Bradford Arts Festival and one of the exhibitions I organised was a poster art show.  I became immersed in this style as I selected posters for the exhibition and again this pushed my artistic taste towards the simple.  In addition, in my previous career, I was a scientist.  In the world of science, we constantly look for patterns and structures, and we often boil down complex entities to their most basic, comprehensible forms.  Similarly, I use minimalistic elements to bring order and clarity to my art, unconsciously mirroring my scientific training.


Minimalistic art can be potent, sparking introspection and making viewers engage in a dialogue with the piece.  Each line, each block of colour, and each form in my work is an invitation for viewers to interpret and assign their own meanings.  It’s not just about viewing a piece of art but experiencing it.  The beauty of minimalism lives in this interaction, where the viewer becomes a part of the art.

“Stop thinking about art works as objects,

and start thinking about them as triggers for experiences.” – Brian Eno

Minimalism is not a limitation but a liberation, challenging me to find that ‘perfect’ line or the ‘perfect’ colour that can carry the essence of an idea.  It nudges me to look for beauty in the simplest, most banal things.  Perhaps it also helps you, the viewer, to find beauty in that simplicity.


If my artistic journey has taught me anything, it’s that less is more.  That’s the fascinating thing about minimalism.  It doesn’t seek to overwhelm but rather to touch upon the senses delicately, leaving a lasting impression.


This fusion of clarity and depth is what I strive for in my work: the collision of precision and freedom, resulting in something uniquely beautiful.


As you dive into the world of minimalism, remember that it’s not about what’s taken away but what’s left behind – a world of untold stories and emotions ready to be unravelled.  Welcome to my world, where the power of minimalism in art is always in full display.


Let the simplicity inspire you, the colours move you, and the lines tell their story.  Minimalism may surprise you and draw you into a world you may never want to leave!

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