These techniques allowed Kirkland to create entirely new visualizations for his ideas that were true to his artist’s vision His work is divided into these categories: Designed Realism, Surrealism, Hard Edge Abstraction/Abstractions, Abstract Expressionism and The Dot Paintings, with the latter ones focusing on depictions of the physical universe beyond earth’s atmosphere (Kirkland Muesum).
Kirkland’s unique technique is clearly visible in the “Conception of Space Mysteries” painting which is designed to evoke the sense of inscrutability, grandeur and awe of the unknown space in the viewer. Kirkland himself was an avid fan of the discoveries of the cosmos and the advancement taking place in space exploration. His paintings try to depict the wonder of the yet unseen space as conceptualized through basic human senses of sight. The Director of the Museum of Modern Art, Vienna, Lóránd Hegyi had this to say about the painter “ in his later work, he developed a visionary art which mystically empathized with the entire universe, gavecosmic universality visual form in explosive images and used panel painting to convey the perpetually changing state of the universe.” (Hegvi, p65)
The painting masterfully uses the bold shades of red and purple as the background to convey the awesome power and force of the galaxies, contrasted against lighter, more subtle shades of blue, green and yellow to give the painting depth. By mixing oil and water, Kirkland is also able to provide a textured surface to his painting that provide a different feel to his space era paintings; the surfaces even resemble the rugged surfaces of a moon’s crater to the more imaginative. It can certainly be implied that the painter carefully formed the style of painting that would allow him to project visuals of the space as he conceived them- as something very different