In each installment, a guest writer chooses one Pantone color they find particularly meaningful, intriguing, or just aesthetically beautiful—and tells us why.


By Karl England, artist and Sluice co-director

Pantone 447 is a slate grey, it’s utilitarian, the colour of pencil lead, of carbon paper, the tool for preparatory work, for working-out, measuring, the supportive under-layer for the finished piece. It privileges form and shape over colour, it treats other colours as frivolous surface decoration. It’s the colour of ash, a rejection of the artwork as a financial commodity, where red and blue in oil on canvas occupies a higher status than grey on paper because the market says so. It’s concerned with the journey rather than the destination.

Pantone 447 is neither black nor white, it’s ill-defined, grey has no standard-bearer, it occupies a range rather than a singular essence. It’s for people that luxuriate in the complexity of the non-binary, neither one thing nor another. It’s the blurry undefined idea on the periphery. It’s a little melancholic, it exudes an undefined wistfulness. 

Pantone 447 is for an art the rejects the grand spectacle for a subdued sublime, it’s not insistent but quietly self-assured.

PANTONE® Color identification is solely for Companyic purposes and not intended to be used for specification. PANTONE and the PANTONE Chip Design are trademarks of Pantone in the United States and/or in other countries and are used with the written permission of Pantone. © Pantone LLC, 2012. All rights reserved.