Opening Thursday 3 June, 2010, 8©\10 pm
The Bernier/ Eliades Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new paintings by Phillip Allen. It is the artist¡¯s first exhibition in Greece. Phillip Allen (b. London, 1967) has gained international acclaim for his revolutionary approach to painting since graduating from the Royal College of Art in 1992.
His work reexamines and reinvigorates pictorial conventions to test and transcend traditions of geometric abstraction and landscape painting. Each piece reveals a highly developed individual manner with a kaleidoscopic synthesis of constructed shapes vividly coloured in imagined patterns.
At once architectural and biomorphic, molecular and cosmic, each enigmatic composition is brought to life in the radial motion of a controlled explosion. The result is a new visual syntax that is equally reminiscent of funfair rides, Islamic patterning, starburst galaxies, video games and the Russian avantgarde.
Each composition is set before an empty background of suggested infinity and framed above and below by a rich cumulative impasto. The thickly applied raw oil paint, still shaped as it has come out of the tube onto the wooden board, takes on a strong sculptural presence. It forms a portal between the surface of the painting and the spectator. Seeing each composition through this frame gives the feeling of peering into an imagined garden of paradise, as an inner state of being.
The contrast between the materiality of the inactive paint on the edges and the paint rendered deliberately in the centre by the artist¡¯s brush raises the fundamental question ¨C when is a painting more than the sum of its parts? How can paint as matter ever represent what is real? A contemplation of each work as a whole warns against any linear reading and the pitfalls of employing principles of language to decode an image. Questioning its own meaning throughout, this new body of work by Phillip Allen touches upon the sublime and shows it as a trick of the hand.
Recent solo exhibitions include: The Approach, London (2009); Xavier Hufkens, Brussels (2007); Milton Keynes Gallery (2006); Kerlin Gallery, Dublin (2005); and the P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York (2003). Selected group exhibitions include: Fabioni Tiboni Arte Contemporanea, Bologna (2010); ¡®Kaleidoscopic Revolver¡¯, The Total Museum, Seoul & Hanjiyun Contemporary Space, Beijing (2009); ¡®M25 Around London¡¯ curated by Barry Schwabsky, Centro Cultural Andratx, Mallorca (2008); ¡®Archpeinture: painters build architecture¡¯, Camden Arts Centre, London (2006); Le Plateau/ FRAC Ile©\de©\ France, Paris (2006); ¡®The British Art Show 6¡¯, BALTIC Gateshead and touring (2005); and ¡®Contemporary Art in London¡¯, The Royal Academy, London (2002).
The gallery remains open Tue©\ Fri, 10:30 ¨C 20:00 and Sat, 12:00 ¨C 16:00