Isolation, Solitary, Suspended

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From our enforced lockdown, this exhibition brings together work based on the idea of isolation before it became our reality, in the time suspended by Covid 19. Whether created through anxiety, lack of connection, or a desired detachment; there has always been a romantic idea of the lonely figure, however we know humans are social beings, biologically designed to match each other’s emotions and even unconsciously mirror and sympathise with one another. When socialising is limited to only those with whom we cohabit for a prolonged period of time, how do we now view isolation?

Isabel Bingley, Curator

John Kirby
Company, 2007
Oil on canvas
65 x 54 cm | 25 3/4 x 21 1/2 in

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Aleah Chapin
The Air Was Full, 2014
Oil on linen
213.4 x 147.3 cm | 84 x 58 in

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Tai-Shan Schierenberg
Walden, 2019
Oil on canvas
190 x 130 cm | 74 3/4 x 51 1/8 in

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Schierenberg’s Walden, is an example of tranquillity in solitude, inspired by the transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau's book of the same name, 'a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings'. The artist describes his protagonist’s relationship with nature as ambiguous. An image of deep calm, combining what he sees as his Chinese decorative feel with a German romanticist attitude towards nature.

Esther Teichmann
Untitled from Mythologies, 2012-2014
Hand-painted chromogenic print
128 x 163.5 cm | 50 3/8 x 64 3/8 in

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As with all of Esther Teichmann's practice Untitled from Mythologies, 2012-2014, is set in a fictional world described by the artist as ' closer to how I see the world with closed eyes.' Drawn to works that alternate and entangle themes of love and grief, Teichmann explores the confusion between loving an image, an idyllic fantasy, in place of it's now camouflaged subject. Here in Untitled from Mythologies, 2012-2014, it is the artist's parents who are her subjects, relaxing in Teichmann's alternative, constructed arcadia.

Peter Howson
Bridge to Nowhere, 1998-99
Oil on canvas
183 x 122 cm | 72 x 48 in

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The theme of life's struggles permeates the work of Peter Howson. Whilst working on Bridge to Nowhere, 1998-99 he was battling with various addictions and personal demons that have been ever-present in his paintings. For Howson a crowded city can be an oppressive, and alienating place. Here he empathises with this outcast, a tormented, desperate and above all lonely figure; crumpled on the fringes of Glasgow.

"I don't sit down with an idea then illustrate it. It's the visual idea that occurs at the very beginning.  My feelings are then transmitted into the image. All my experience as a person, as a human being - all the things I've read, seen, thought, felt.  All these things they come through in the making of the work." Ken Currie

Ken Currie
Bird watching, 2004
Oil on canvas
183 x 228 cm | 72 x 89 3/4 in

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Jiro Osuga
Looking Up IV, 2018
Oil on canvas
126 x 99 cm | 49 5/8 x 39 in

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Peter Schmersal
Eremit in romantischer Landschaft, 2012
Oil on canvas
200 x 140 cm | 78 3/4 x 55 1/8 in

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With the worldwide shift in daily routine from Jiro Osuga's Lewis Carroll inspired London, in Looking up IV, 2018 to Movana Chen's Body container travel maps, 2019, formed from shredded maps, these works have evolved from surreal depictions, to relatable representations of a now static life, far removed from their original conception.

Mona Kuhn
AD7272, 2013-14
Chromogenic print
152 x 114 cm | 60 x 45 in

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Ishbel Mysercough
Kiss, 2019
Oil on canvas
30 x 30 cm | 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 in

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