Green On Red Gallery
Study for a studio by the Sea
April 13th – June 2nd, 2018
Reception: Thursday 12th April, 2018, 6 – 8pm
Green On Red Gallery is pleased to present Study for a studio by the Sea, the second solo exhibition of new works by Irish artist Ramon Kassam in the Spencer Dock gallery. In this exhibition of new paintings the artist continues to make works that reflect on the physical, social and art historical conditions of their own creation with inventiveness and humour. The fiction of the artist grappling with his subject, even his career, in his studio is fleshed out in these ambitious paintings and diptychs. The canvases are physically and visually layered, at times confusing real space with depicted space in large colourful expanses.
Study for a Studio by the Sea takes its name from one of the central works in the show. The large-scale painting depicts an artist’s desire to actively engage with, fantasise about and shape their environment through studio activity and painting. This work and the other paintings on show are an extension of Kassam’s ongoing project to develop a world in which to cite an artist. As a result, reoccurring themes and motifs related to landscape are present throughout this series of paintings.
The universe he is creating on the 2D pictorial surface of his canvases are spaces the artist can enter into/onto. This imaginary escape route out of his own studio reality allows Kassam to intuitively indulge his appetite to invent the places, narratives and processes from which his paintings draw.
Moving between first person and third person points of view and from one painting to the next, scenes and activities simulated in works for this exhibition include: painting a not-too-distant Nearest Town ( 2018 ); a painting of a distant and desirable destination in Tropical Strokes ( 2018 ); and, you could say, a desperate fantasy of the artist to relocate to the coast played out in Study for a Studio by the Sea ( 2018 ).
The aesthetic of these paintings and Kassam’s practice in general is strongly influenced by his enthusiasm for modernist painting languages. The abbreviated content in his compositions can appear flattened or stretched, and emerge from combining hard-edge blocks of form, colour and imagery. In some works canvases are combined and incorporate collage. At times minimal and at times gestural, his paintings can blur in and out of legible imagery and pure abstraction.
In a gesture that further complicates and extends the dialogue in Study for a studio by the Sea, the exhibition generously includes two additional paintings to Kassam’s own, one each by painters Fiona Burke and Seán Guinan, studio peers and friends of the artist. Both works employ comparable visual languages to Kassam's and make reference to landscape. Presenting them together in his show, Kassam re-casts the paintings as those of his bitter rivals in the painting landscape of his expanding, invented universe.
As always, the processes and concepts on show are intended to provide multiple readings of the work, but ultimately aim to connect to painting’s visual tradition, and the physical and psychological landscape of the real world.
Special events organised during the run of this exhibition will be announced.
Gallery Opening Hours
Monday - Tuesday by appointment
Wednesday - Friday 10:00am - 5.30pm
Saturday 11:00am - 3:00pm