A palimpsest is a manuscript that has been scraped off and reused. An example of this practise dates from Roman times when text would be written on wax-coated tablets that would be smoothed over and used again.
Vellum manuscripts were over-written due to the cost of the material.
Sometimes reuse had the effect of rendereing the earlier work obsolete or comparatively less important. An example of this would be pagan texts being overwritten by Christian scripture or even pagan sites being overlaid with Christian churches.
Palimpsestism and the Creative Trail
Intentism celebrates the Intention to meaning bridge that links unshakeably the journey form the artist's creative intention to the meaning of the finished vehicle.
Subsequently, the creative intentional journey is of central importance to an Intentist.
Historically artists have found themselves in two camps regarding the creative journey. Firstly, the artist may see this journey as deeply personal. This may cause him/her to keep the work secret until the work is completed and may even contribute to an artist destroying a work if it is considered a failed piece before it has been publicly viewed. Conversley, as with several of the exponents of action painting, the journey may be considered as more important than the finished work.
Intentists celebrate the creative journey both theoretically and visually. The artist's creative journey is manifest in the work as a trail that can be pursued.
Whether in painting or written work the layers of imagery or text that is rewritten or edited are left somewhat visible. This multiple layering is why many Intentists have been referred to as Palimpsests.
Nevertheless, the final, resolved work is not submerged in a muddle of intentional edits but is clearly present and distinguishable from the work in progress.