CLARE DAVIDSON & COCO MORRIS: ‘THROUGH THE PORTAL’ 20 JULY – 6 AUGUST SOHO REVUE 1-4 WALKERS COURT London W1F 0BT
‘Through the Portal’ explores concepts of openings and how to overcome the two-dimensionality of painting to depict a convincing sense of space. Veering away from the Western naturalistic tradition of one-point perspective, Coco and Clare turn to abstraction, experimenting with colour and form to conjure a more intangible ‘sense’ of space. Uniting all the paintings in the show is the quest for illusionary spaces and a challenge to the liminality of the canvas.
Both artists are interested in colour experimentation and psychology, and they have a strong commitment to its primacy over realistic subject matter or narrative. Diverging from the historic use of mathematics and perspective to create three dimensionality, they investigate the effects of differing colour quantities and relationships as a means of creating the sensation of space. Many of the brighter works are confrontational, whilst the deep blues in others recede, drawing the viewer inwards. Whilst both Coco and Clare have their own distinct palette, they both use bold hues to create a sense of expansion in their large paintings, visual punctuation.
Repetitive mark making draws the eye across constantly shifting surfaces, offering an abstract sense of narrative progression which allow a refreshed sense of freedom for interpretation.The works in Through the Portal are as much about the act of making as the final pieces. Their expressive marks reveal a laboured process of painting, where layers of paint are built up and the canvases become like a record of time. The hand of both artists and distinct vocabulary of their brushstrokes brings a strong immediacy to each piece.
Through the Portal showcases innovative ways of overcoming the liminality of painting and challenges how they can be experienced; how, for example, a painting viewed from a distance appears to be flat, yet when seen close up can engulf us in colour and detail. There is an ever present negotiation of scale and how this formal quality not only changes the aesthetics of how a work might be made, but also its affect on the experience of the viewer.