And so it goes: Richard Deacon, Merlin James and Heather & Ivan Morison
Richard Deacon, Merlin James and Heather & Ivan Morison were selected to represent Wales at the 52nd Venice Biennale of Art in 2007 and we are delighted to bring the critically acclaimed exhibition to audiences in the UK.
Merlin James’ small and arresting canvases are playful, gestural and unpredictable in form and subject. They are layered, abraded, sometimes punctured, textured with hair or dirt; and their imagery can include landscape elements, interiors, figures, buildings, doorways and sexually explicit scenes.
The complex surfaces of James’ canvases are testament to his endeavour over time; they are rich and rewarding, drawing the eye back and forth across the canvas without necessarily allowing it to settle on a ‘subject’.
The work of Heather & Ivan Morison examines the extraordinary beauty and detail of the natural world. To present their observations they use formal and conceptual devices, engaging with and responding to their surroundings.
The film installation, Dark Star, documents the artists’ search of America for the original nomadic groups of people who travelled through the States in house-trucks made from felled timber. Whilst there, the Morisons gathered accounts from these ‘New Age American Gypsies’ on their time spent building, travelling and living in their rolling homes.
The medium-format slide film in ‘Dark Star’ is accompanied by a range of animated, spinning, ominous crystalline forms that hover above the barren landscapes of Quartzite, Arizona. These meteorites cast a flickering shadow over the many house-trucks, caravans and everyday detritus that have seemingly been abandoned in the rush to avoid the moment of collision that ceaselessly threatens but never ensues.
Richard Deacon’s diverse practice has consistently challenged and extended notions of what sculpture is, and what it might be. His work communicates the playfulness of an aesthetic freedom that comes from an understanding that art can be made out of anything; deriving its identity and meaning through its context and audiences.
Deacon will exhibit Range A-G, made in 2005. The seven forms on plinths have been created by cutting away and hollowing out solid blocks of clay, continuing Deacon’s longstanding investigation of the boundaries between interior and exterior.
Placed on unglazed, brick-red plinths the forms are covered with a rich, flesh-coloured glaze that is at once reflective and transparent, attractive and repellent as it drips and dribbles from the work to play with the sensual experience of sculpture as both tactile and visual.