For her first solo show at the Mayor Gallery, Indian born British artist Tanya Ling will make a group of new Line Paintings that add to the series started in 2014.
The works will be exclusively made in the gallery over one weekend before the show opens; sheets of paper will be hung while Ling with a paint kettle in one hand and paint brush in the other gets to work. Each of the approximately 20 works will share a single colour which for this season, is Dr. Ph. Martin’s Cadmium Red, a red with an evocative 1970s orange hue.
Dr. Ph. Martin’s Ultramarine and Dr Ph Martin’s Sap Green were the colours used for the production run in 2015 and 2017 respectively and the works from 2014 were made in an ultramarine ink identified in the studio as a Matisse blue. These early Matisse blue lines avoided each other and never crossed while the more recent works see the lines cross and blend in a playful manner, and are a little less disciplined letting the drips fall in the manner of Christopher Wool. Completed in one sitting they are never reworked, hanging together aesthetically but no two are the same. They describe form but after all our looking there is no discernible object other than one imagined. If we could see it from outside the space-time continuum would music look like this? They scale up and scale down move in and move out. Twist, turn and run and then slow down again.
In 2013, Ling was invited by The Mayor Gallery to paint directly onto the gallery’s walls to mark the closing of the 22a Cork Street space. This first public appearance of the Line Painting took the form of a mural that was, in due course, smashed up and ground down by the demolition of the building pre-development. The genesis of the lines can be traced back before this to a textile design painted by Ling for the Louis Vuitton Cruise collection 2009, a commsion for a Fendi handbag, a large mural that formed the back drop to her sculpture show at Derbyshire frame makers, 2015 and on a limited-edition collection of swimwear from the designer Araks Yeramyan.
Born in Calcutta (1966), her childhood was spent in America, Africa and England where she studied Fashion Design and Textiles at St Martins School of Art. After graduating in 1989 Ling moved to Paris to work as a designer for Dorothee Bis and then for Christian Lacroix. On her return to London she set up a contemporary art project Bipasha Ghosh with her husband William Ling and in 1996 produced her first exhibition of drawings in artist Gavin Turk’s studio on the Charing Cross Road, London. This exhibition led to her first commission from British Vogue. Since then, Ling has contributed to leading fashion titles throughout the world including Harper’s Bazaar and US Elle.
Tanya Ling lives and works in London