The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

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The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

18th November 2021 – 18th January 2022

Paintings are always arrived at through a decision-making process, where one thing follows another.  Even if the decision is to leave it up to chance, to rely on the accidental and the incidental, it is still a choice on the part of the artist.  Each action or move takes place in a sequence of events.  Some paintings require many decisions, others take only a few.  We could think of paintings as containers, as holders, of a pictorial and material decision-making process, where paint – or an equivalent material - is applied, pushed around, added, removed, arranged, re-arranged into some sort of order (or disorder).

There are obvious visual connections that can be made when seeing the work of such a large group of artists.  Visual rhythms start to unfold, the echo of a shape or the recurrence of a similar hue.  But curating a show is not simply about establishing such clear connections; it is about juxtaposing differences, bringing together and highlighting oppositions.  Here there is no one prevailing genre, style or attitude.  The common denominator between these artists being their year spent together on the Turps Correspondence Course.  The scope of the artists involved has therefore produced an exhibition that covers the widest possible territory of painting, from hard-edge abstraction through to naturalistically described figuration.

Yellow bodies and a field of blue …the comfortability of a familiar beast…light and shadow amongst the trees…moments of colour throughout the vastness of an open landscape…looking away from one another…a corpse in a box…a new illumination…coloured puddles sewn together…a chromatic geometry…clasped hands come into focus…twisting and coiling standing tall…a still interior, motionless inhabitants…boats sit within a heavy surface…a tree stretches outward, uprooted…an interior radiating blue…a distant view on the hillside…a face materialises from within…faceless flesh…freshly cut flowers…nature in full bloom…dark ringed eyes and golden yellow hair…piped and dripping paint…systematic differences…floating and untethered…rising below moonlight…a modest and irregular division…the open arena…the swimmer’s chin…framing a frame…a place of nostalgia…underfoot foliage…a pair of writhing bodies…up close and far away…the sinking musician continues to play…emerging from the void…a site of repetition and rhythm…colour entering or exiting… birds in rotation…marks accumulated…something to grab hold off…a transformation captured on camera…a moment in time…the space beyond…the visibility of a mark…an architecture is formed…and a scene is set…the oncoming acceleration…the point where different zones meet…a structure stands…an ornamental monument…a night with Maud…the arrangement and intersection of shape…a material fluidity…light overcoming darkness…a type of translation…staying above the water….or staring into it to find your reflection…a growing applause…the filling in of space…an invitation of shelter…a slippage between things …below the surface…a mythic figure…the street from inside…a domesticity…where one head becomes another…a smoking skeleton…multiplying motifs…a message in two parts…a body becoming…twin vases…a change in perspective…a distribution of colour…the visage looks back...in the forest…the outline of an apple…as orange dissects blue…an outdoor mistiness…and a bloody confrontation…the galloping horse…the road ahead…with pigment on ground…patterned structure…an assembled figure…a turning head…paint buries the photographic…an erotic embrace…a spectral location…a vocabulary of paint…and picture which points in one direction and then another.

The format of viewing the show, as a type of continuous film reel where we can scroll right and left without interruption, then select individual paintings, works remarkably well.  It gives the exhibition a sense of community through individuality.  Each painting stands its ground, puts forward a proposition of its own to be accepted, or rejected, by the viewer.  Each painting tells a narrative – not narrative in the sense of representing a story, although some admittedly do – but a narrative of their own making.  This is another attribute all of the 92 works share – a real sense of making, of working something out.  And as we move from painting to painting, we experience these shifts, in pace, in atmosphere, in force, and we must allow ourselves to adapt to a new sensibility with every new work we encounter.

The title of the show, ‘The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog’, is a well-known typing exercise; the sentence contains all letters of the English alphabet.  Within those 26 characters, there are inexhaustible possibilities.  An infinite potential.  And it is this sense of potentiality that this exhibition stages, where any painting has within it a similar sense of potential, and becomes a site of unknown possibilities.      

Scott McCracken

November 2021

The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

18th November 2021 – 18th January 2022

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The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

18th November 2021 – 18th January 2022

Works featured in The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog . Click on image for details.

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The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog

18th November 2021 – 18th January 2022

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