Sidney Goodman was an American figurative painter and draftsman from Philadelphia who received public notice in the early 1960s for his oil paintings, leading to his inclusion in the 1973 Whitney Biennial. Goodman created a painting titled “Waste” between 1984-86, which reflects his concern about what he called “the violated landscape.” The artwork’s uncomfortable viewpoint shows a devastated landscape covered in debris and industrial waste.
Goodman’s early work had a strong metaphysical quality, but as he continued to develop as an artist, his focus shifted toward social and political issues. In “Waste,” he tackles environmentalism by depicting pollution and industrialization that destroys the natural world. The painting is dramatic with its dark colors and contrasts of light, emphasizing the severity of the subject matter.
Drawing remains at the heart of Goodman’s artistic practice, as evident in “Waste.” He utilizes texture to evoke emotions from viewers through line work and methodically applied color schemes. The textures reflect underlying decay through heavy brushstrokes that lead us to interpret various grotesque elements cautiously laid across one another.
In conclusion, Sidney Goodman’s “Waste” powerfully communicates despair at the invasion of man’s destructive reality on nature. Despite being done over three decades ago, this art piece serves as a significant reminder of why artists like Goodman have raised their voices against environmental injustices worldwide.