until 08.01. | #3221ARTatBerlin | Galerie Kornfeld presents from 6th November 2021 the solo exhibition Between Boundaries by the British artist Nick Dawes.
In his colourfield canvases, the artist strives for a new quality of painterly abstraction. His ability to control complex tonal arrangements and the juxtaposition of irregular shapes give his works their unique and striking appeal. The unified flatness of his paintings also contrive to present us with various possibilities of space – of proximity and distance. Each point sends us shuttling to another area of colour, which in turn persuades us to examine yet a third, and so on. Every painting Nick Dawes creates represents the time it was made in, how he felt and what his influences were in this particular moment. The impossibility of ever recreating this exact emotional state makes each work unique.
The works themselves start out as small drawings and sketches based on texts appropriated from driving instruction manuals and other sign-like quotidian objects. The structure slowly dissolves as the colours begin to penetrate and pour, blurring the boundaries between functionality and abstraction, once solid components flowing into a new vocabulary of fluid entities.
Working on unprimed canvases, the artist pours heavily thinned industrial oil paint directly onto his surfaces. Though the directions are pre-planned in his earlier drawings, this process creates the potential for the unpredictable. As the different colour fields begin to overlap in a kind of expanded watercolour aesthetic, the oil separates from its core, creating beautiful atmospheric halos around each shape.
The initial colours disappear partially or completely behind subsequent layers of paint, producing a story that is told and untold at the same time, a reflection of the variety of human communication: how we introduce ourselves, tell our stories, and slowly open up to one another – only to leave behind some hints of the things left unsaid or still to tell. An endless process of giving and taking, communication in all its potential and limitations. To fully discover a Nick Dawes painting one needs to engage in this deeper conversation, uncovering the many layers within.
“In painting, space and form are not actual, as they are in sculpture, but illusory. Painting, indeed, is essentially an art of illusion; and ‘pictorial science’ is simply that accumulated knowledge which enables the painter to control this illusion, the illusion of forms in space. But the secret of good painting – of whatever age or school, I am tempted to say – lies in its adjustment of an inescapable dualism: on the one hand there is the illusion, indeed the sensation, of depth; and on the other there is the physical reality of the flat picture surface.”
Patrick Heron, ‘Space and Colour’, Selected Writings, 2001
Nick Dawes lives and works in London. He completed a BA in Fine Art at the Brighton Polytechnic in 1992, after completing a foundation course at the Gloucestershire College of Art and Technology. In 2006, Nick Dawes was nominated for the Celeste Art Prize. His work has been shown in numerous exhibitions, such as Galerie Kornfeld and 68projects in Berlin, Cell Project Space in London, Gallery Lucy Mackintosh in Lausanne, the John Hansard Gallery in Southampton and at international art fairs including Art021 Shanghai, Expo Chicago and Untitled Miami. His works are part of public and private collections in Germany, Europe and abroad, among others in the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk.
Vernissage: Saturday, 6th November 2021, noon – 8:00 pm
Exhibition period: Saturday, 6th November – Saturday, 8th January 2022, Tue – Sat 11:00 am – 6:00 pmTo the Gallery
Image caption title: Mile, 2021, Oil on canvas, 210 x 275 cm
Exhibition Nick Dawes – Galerie Kornfeld | Zeitgenössische Kunst in Berlin | Contemporary Art | Exhibitions Berlin Galleries | ART at Berlin