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BRADLEY HARMS: SHADY RAMBLER & NEIL HARRISON: NATURE OPENING RECEPTION
ANGELL GALLERY is pleased to present a solo exhibition featuring new paintings and sculptural works by acclaimed Vancouver-based artist, BRADLEY HARMS. The show runs in the west gallery from March 28 to April 26, 2014. An opening reception will be held on Friday, March 28, 6:00 to 9:00 PM. An exhibition by up-and-coming artist Neill Harrison runs concurrently in the east gallery.
Bradley Harms is an outstanding example of the New Abstraction, the 21st century iteration of modernisms greatest contribution to art. Following its overshadowing by conceptualism in the 1970s and neo-expressionism in the 1980s, abstraction experienced a resurgence, with young artists reinterpreting the vocabulary of modernist pioneers. Just as Mondrian, Kandinsky and Malevich responded to their times, painters engaged in the New Abstraction infuse their works with contemporary references. The early 20th century fascination with the machine is echoed by allusions to the Internet. Modernist Utopian idealism is replaced by post-modern uncertainty.
In the paintings of Harms, the geometry of early 20th century modernism and the systems of 21st century technology are fused and mediated through the artists hand. Precision is just out of reach. In Imperfect Grid, the hand-drawn lines inject a fallible human element into modernist structure. In contrast to the reductive, self-contained abstraction of modernism, Harms favours open-ended patterns. Interference Wavelengths Blubars echoes the unending flow of information in the digital age, thus questioning the modernist search for ultimate truths.
Form and colour are boisterous, resisting their containment. The wavering line and vibrant colours in works such as Multidrag Teal are energized through Harmss strategic layering, creating the impression of actual space within the two dimensional plane.
These energized surface and spatial tensions literally take on three dimensions in a new series of sculptural works. Comprised of aluminum rows of vertical lines and zigzags painted in primary colours, these new works are activated as viewers move past, creating dynamic overlapping patterns that change with every step.
Bradley Harms, based in Vancouver, received his BFA from University of Calgary and his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has exhibited in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Miami, Barcelona, Munich, St Petersburg, Sydney, Singapore and Tokyo. His work is in the collections of the Glenbow Museum, the Bank of Montreal, TD Bank and the Canada Council.
In our East Gallery...
ANGELL GALLERY is pleased to present NEIL HARRISON: NATURE, an exhibition of new paintings by this notable emerging artist. The shows runs in the east gallery from March 28 to April 26, 2014. An opening reception will be held on Friday, March 28, 6:00 to 9:00 PM. An exhibition by Vancouver-based painter Bradley Harms runs concurrently in the west gallery.
The enigmatic geometric abstractions of Neil Harrison both stem and depart from painting tradition. Geometric abstraction originated as the vocabulary of idealistic early European modernists such as Malevich, El Lissitzky and Mondrian, who sought to develop a new visual language that they believed would express universal values. In the 1960s, North American abstractionists separated painting from value systems to assert the primacy of formal values in the oft-quotes words of painter Frank Stella, What you see is what you see.
Harrisons work represents a postmodern stance, with ambiguity replacing these two extremes. Concerned with location, boundary, margin, and the engagement between form and space, in his new series, Nature, Harrison conflates line with volume to produce dynamic oppositions simplicity and complexity, curvilinear and rectilinear, open and closed, and particular and whole.
Precisely rendered figures, held taut within a square, appear familiar, recalling corporate logos, scientific symbols or esoteric signs. Yet they remain unidentifiable like signs appearing in the background of a dream. Simultaneously provoking and frustrating our curiosity, Harrisons paintings demand repeated looking.
Neil Harrison, originally from Winnipeg, and now based in Toronto, holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Victoria, BC, and a Masters of Fine Art from York University, Toronto. Recent exhibitions include SuperAbstraction, Angell Gallery, Toronto; Fresh Paint/New Constructions, Art Mur in Montreal; Nine, Loop Gallery, Toronto; Openings, Special Projects Gallery, York University; Homecoming, Living Arts Centre, Mississauga, and Beers Contemporary, Kunst 13, Zurich, Switzerland. Harrison received an honorable mention in the 15th Annual RBC Canadian Painting Competition in 2013.