Gerry Smith

 

 

Gerry Smith  MEET ME IN A DREAM

Featuring artworks by John Swarbrick

This exhibition will be available to view throughout summer by appointment only. 

 

 House of Compliments, Gerry Smith, 2022

Gerry Smith  House of Compliments  2022  paint on cardboard 

 

Private View: Friday 10 June  2 - 8pm
The exhibition continues until Friday 8 July 2022

Gerry Smith is a London based artist who is continually inspired by all that is around him. Smith’s current exhibition, MEET ME IN A DREAM showcases a collection of recent artworks which reflects the artist’s interactions with objects and art. The artworks being exhibited include an array of materials such as feathers and wrappers, sweets and sanding discs, even dried fruit. These items are impulsively arranged and bound together by paints of all colours. The colours and forms disguise the materials in question, acting as a punctum, interrupting the viewers line of vision. This mimics the way in which Smith himself has been drawn to these eye-catching items. What someone may discard, Smith arranges at the centre of a picture – placing it on a pedestal for visual consumption.

The ‘found’ image or object has played a significant role throughout Smith’s painting, with objects and landscapes having to compete with the optical effects of being confronted by vivid colour. Never allowed to wander or seep, the colour is set confidently onto its surface, no matter what material is concealed below or sits proudly atop. Smith admires the work of Belgian artist and poet, Marcel Broodthaers. There are echoes of Broodthaers’ practice in Smith’s work as he plays around with the relationship between fine art and the everyday object through these painted arrangements.

The process behind Smith’s work in MEET ME IN A DREAM verges on automatism as pieces are formed instinctively. These artworks are physical manifestations of the artist’s thoughts and reactions to the colours and forms which have been collected. These collages are often assembled quickly and left alone, only to be broken up the following morning as the artist’s vision has altered overnight. This urgency is captured within these up-tempo artworks which are the products of a fleeting creative urgency felt by Smith. After a piece is considered whole enough, Smith moves onto his next arrangement without dwelling on what he has just created.

This pattern of find, arrange, rearrange and repeat is like playing a game in Smith’s eyes. Like a game each artwork has an unpredictable outcome as the artist delves into creation without a plan or end goal. Each work communicates the obvious pleasure that the artist takes in creating, but they also transmit his permanent concern to be an artist observing our society. The art is not a simple exploration of the pictorial language and theme nor is it a dialogue of forms and colours, it is an expression of living which draws its substance and energy from the life lived in the city immersed by materials and colours.

Gerry Smith has exhibited both nationally and internationally. Solo exhibitions have been held at Atelier d’Argent, Brussels (1993); Cabinet d’Art Contemporain, Brussels (1994); Danielle Arnaud, London (1995, 1997, 1999, 2015); Oliver Sixten, Brussels (1997); Stichting Kunstbevordering, Brussels (1998); Pascale Drion, Brussels (2001) and Gallery Westland Place, London (2001). Group shows have been exhibited at Cabinet d’Art Contemporain, Brussels (1994, 1995); Oh!, Brussels (1995); Sabine Wachters,  Brussels (1996); Accident, London (1998); Clink Wharf Gallery,  London (1999); Animal Beauty, Danielle Arnaud (1998); The Glass Border, Danielle Arnaud (1999);  Nicole Klagsbrun, New York (1999); IAF, London (2000); Gallery Dialogue,  Ostende (2001); FosterArt,  London (2004); Painting is Cruel, Danielle Arnaud (2005); Pump House Gallery,  London (2005); V22 Contemporary Art Collection, London (2006); Biennale Austria, Klagenfurt (2006); Annie Gentils, Antwerp (2008).

Smith has also curated shows including Sense & Nonsense, Danielle Arnaud (2003); Outdoors, Danielle Arnaud (2006); Buitendoor, Ostend (2009); Allow me to present, Munich (2010); War Rooms, Danielle Arnaud (2011); Experiment Nr 2, Munich (2014); The Last Princess, Munich (2021).

John Swarbrick, Untitled, 2022
John Swarbrick  Utitled  Gouache on paper

 

For this show, Gerry Smith has invited fellow London based artist, John Swarbrick, to exhibit a selection of his artwork. Swarbrick’s paintings are profound meditations on image-making sedimented within images themselves. On the one hand, they are the result of a virtuosic grasp of paint's material possibilities and, on the other, they explore painting's evolving formal possibilities in the wider context of contemporary image production. On a visual level, the intersecting, looping lines in each work evoke a range of associations including eccentric architectures and ambiguous objects, loosely contoured figures and puzzle-piece heads, arabesques and scaffolds. Often the drawing balances between plan and object, as if representing a thing in the process of being unfolded. Swarbrick's reflection on the relation between materiality and appearance is apparent in all aspects of the work - from supports to grounds, from the qualities of line to those of paint itself.

In particular, the ground, no less so than the drawing inscribed on it, is integral to the image. In some paintings it may be powdery in imitation of stone or paper, where in others it is textured like wood. Metaphorically, it is as if the image were delineated on top of a depiction, with the result that we seem to be looking at an image of an image. A similar effect is created in other paintings that present the viewer with an improbably sheer and glassy surface reminiscent of a digital screen. Not directly digital, they nonetheless acknowledge the screen as part of their idiom. Overall, these are paintings that revel in both visual and formal invention consonant with the medium's recent history, as well as the new potentials of its evolving material and technical conditions.

Swarbrick’s solo exhibitions and awards include: Almeida Gallery, London (1983);  Zola Lieberman Gallery, Chicago (1985); Adam Gallery, London (1986); Unit 7 Gallery (Museum of Installation), London (1987); Islington Arts Factory, London (1988);  Blenheim gallery, London (1989); BP Oil Sculpture competition (short listed), Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank, London (1990); Engrain, Jock Colville Hall, Churchill College, Cambridge (2001); winner in the Ishizumi Fan Design competition (2012).

Group shows include: Showroom Gallery, London (1984); Name Gallery, Chicago (1985); British Contemporary Photography, Chester; Patricia Knight Gallery, London (1987); Whitechapel Open, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London; Galleria de Barranco, Lima, Peru (1989); Ersatz, 10 Martello St. Studios, London; Pleasures at the table, Exeter University (1991); Cable & Wireless, London (1996); Tom Blau Gallery, London; E1 Gallery, London (1997); Attlee Foundation, Gulbenkian Gallery, RCA, London (1998); TheSelectors, Islington Arts Factory, London (2000); Lost the remote, Mellow Birds Gallery, London (2001); Britart Gallery, London (2003); Tempest Radford, London (2004); Fosterart, London (2005);  Outdoors, Danielle Arnaud Contemporary Art, London (2006); Buiten Door, Andromeda, Kursaal Westhelling, Oostende (2009); Smith & Williamson, Moorgate, London; Exhibition at Brunei Gallery, University of London, SOAS (2012).

PLEASE CLICK HERE TO VIEW A PDF OF THE WORKS


Please contact danielle@daniellearnaud.com for any further enquiries

 

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith The House of Compliments   2021/2022
Paint on cardboard  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  Twinkle and Pharoah  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith Three   2021/2022
Paint on ceramic  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
John Swarbrick  Untitled 1-10  2021/2022
Gouache on acid free paper  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
John Swarbrick  Untitled 1-4  2021/2022
Gouache on acid free paper  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
John Swarbrick Untitled 6 and 7   2021/2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  I'm Gonna Cut You  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor


 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  MEET ME IN A DREAM  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith   2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  MEET ME IN A DREAM  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  China Vinyl  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  Grey Field  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith  MEET ME IN A DREAM  2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick   2021/2022
Mixed Media  installation view by Oskar Proctor

 MEET ME IN A DREAM, Gerry Smith and John Swarbrick, 2022
John Swarbrick   2019 - 2022
Acrylic and impasto gen on board  installation view by Oskar Proctor

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