Current and Upcoming
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Fitzrovia Gallery. 139 Whitfield St, London W1T 5E
Open daily 11am-7pm or by appointment
As it was, as it will be = As it is, is an exhibition of new works by five painters engaged in a process of direct experience, mark-making and discovery. For each artist, the image is found in the moment of painting, and it is this ‘presentness’ that creates a dialogue between material and subject. The paintings exist somewhere between abstraction and figuration, each at a point of resolution in an ongoing process of exploration and play.
Chris Burn’s paintings are unashamedly childlike in subject and iconography. Figures and objects are seemingly weightless or perhaps mid-fall. Painted with brutal force and abandon, buoyed by the poster-paint colours and cartoonish characters, his work reflects a passion for experimentation and directness.
A similar approach is found in the paintings of Jaime Valtierra which present themselves with impressive force and power. The images come screaming into existence like a newborn child. The figures reflect recent themes of family life and memory, limbs jut out creating shapes and spaces within the painting.
In the works of Paul Fenner memories of people and places are also a recurring theme. The spaces become distorted and compressed. ‘Wrestlers in a landscape (Jacob and the Angel)’ sets up rhythms between inside and outside, the figures move through space, each brushstroke capturing their action and gesture.
Rachel Mercer’s paintings juxtapose everyday scenes and classical themes creating psychologically charged images in which the physicality of the figures is asserted in the forceful use of paint. Grappling and embracing, the fraught protagonists move across the canvas creating a sense of disappearance and presence.
Pepe Vives' improvisations in monochrome are joyful in design whilst simultaneously gritty and dark. The abstract, unnamable forms vibrate, pushing and pulling in space. Pepe works intuitively often motived by a movement or a feeling, completing the painting in one sitting without over-painting or reworking the paintings are records of a unique performance.