"12 British Artists" Exhibition


poster for "12 British Artists" Exhibition

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Flowers presents a group exhibition titled 12 British Artists featuring work by, Glenys Barton, Cedric Christie, Bernard Cohen, John Keane, John Kirby, Nicola Hicks, Peter Howson, John Hoyland, Patrick Hughes, Lucy Jones, Nicola Hicks and Richard Smith. It will run from August 3rd through August 23rd, 2012.

Glenys Barton is foremost a sculptor of the human form. Working largely in ceramic, she focuses great attention to the surface quality of each piece, experimenting with smoked surfaces and crackled glazes. In Tattoo Head I 2009, Barton covers a ceramic head with an outline of a series of dancers who often provide the inspiration for many of her pieces.

Cedric Christie’s multi-media work explores a broad range of cultural and art historical references. His work becomes both a critical appraisal of modernism as well as a playful exploration of color, form and meaning. Inspired by ballet, Dancer (Untitled) 2011, demonstrates transient gestures and mercurial movement, bringing to mind a dancer’s flexibility and ability to move weightlessly, seamlessly.

The border between order and chaos is evident in the works of Bernard Cohen. They revel in fragmentation as decoration, and shun a definitive subject or genre. In Pictorial II 2001, Cohen creates a composition of textured applications of paint and interwoven arrays of lines and forms, creating a complex and vibrating geography.

Nicola Hicks’ achievement is founded on a unique ability to capture the physicality and psychology of the animal and human figures she depicts. The resulting sculptures, as in Red Horse Study 2005, often combine charm as well as menace in equal and sometimes devastating measures.

Peter Howson is an artist of disarming visual honesty. Many of his paintings, including Hades IV 2011, depict the landscapes of modern war and internal struggle with a Goyaesque brilliance. They are testaments to an obsessive occupation with the dark recesses of existence, a drive that he has channeled, in recent years, into a robust faith and spiritualism.

Patrick Hughes’ world is one of flux and paradoxical space in which vision is mobile. Preconceived assumptions of the eye and brain are challenged, inevitably raising questions about our perception and the science of sight. Libraries as depicted in The End of Infinity 2010 are frequently used by Hughes as a perspective device and metaphor creating a sense of movement for which his works are renown.

John Keane’s work over the last thirty years has dealt with difficult subjects which are by definition historical, but whose recurring themes continue to reassert themselves with uncanny cyclical relevance - be it urban un-rest, cynical practice at the heart of the financial world, or the stranglehold of the Murdoch Empire. In a series of large and small scale paintings titled, Time Passage 2011, Keane turns his attention to a haunting and melancholic painting The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit by John Singer Sergeant. He explores his own relationship with his children and the inevitable separation between child and parent. This exhibition marks the first time that this series has been on view.

John Kirby’s evocative and deeply moving paintings portray men painted in flat, still backgrounds and placed in quiet, intense situations that record his anxiety, personal uncertainty, and self-doubt. These themes are evident in his triptych, Party 2010.

Lucy Jones sits in the Welsh Marches landscape, remaking it in paint marks and color, trying to grasp the tangible weight and power of sky and earth. Serenity 2011 displays her characteristically “expressionistic” manner which is the genre she is often aligned.

According to Mel Gooding, the late John Hoyland “unwaveringly championed the centrality of abstraction to the living history of modernist art.” Hoyland is often recognized as one of the most important abstract painters of his time. One can see his ability to convey a powerful charge of visual, mental and emotional energy in his later painting, Snake River 2007.

A prominent figure in contemporary music, art, film, stage design, literature and criticism, Tom Phillips is known for his pioneering explorations of word and image. Using blank verse ruminations and pictorial glosses, the autobiographical series titled, Curriculum Vitae I-VI 1986-88, explores the labyrinth of his mind where he discovers the early occurrences of his obsessions in his art and life.

Richard Smith’s brilliant ability to effectively blend both Pop Art and Abstraction can be considered one of his greatest contributions to the art world. His painting, Surface III 2009, is eternally optimistic, echoing beautifully judged communication between shapes and radiant colors, making them at once both seductive and intellectually satisfying.


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