New Work Friday #64

New Work Oct 22, 2010 No Comments

“Simon O’Carrigan is a Melbourne based artist who, after studying painting for four years, spent two years working in hand drawn animation. In the second of two exhibitions for 2010, O’Carrigan has turned his hand to dark subject matter. He says: “I was spending all my time looking at the works of pioneering photographers, people who started the ball rolling in terms of picturing movement through time — Edward Muybridge and Étienne Jules-Marey. They made these stark black and white works, and they had such a level of absurdity: people lugging cans about in the nude (Muybridge), or out-of-context pole vaulters (Marey). It made me think of Camus, and his story based on Sisyphus. The darkness behind the absurdity seemed to sink through the dense black pigments of these layered negatives, especially with Marey. So, I’ve kind of run with that…” The works extend his occasional approach of gluing ink-on-paper drawings onto and into paintings, allowing him to transfer his crisp graphic drawing style into the paint. The subject matter revolves around involuntary movements of the body – a boxer being knocked out, figures falling through space, collapsing onto the ground. It seems Simon is no longer tracing the movement people create for themselves (as with his sport related works), but looking at the effect physics and force can have on the human body. They are intensely bleak works, but somehow have a breathing space that renders them all too peaceful – an unsettling thing to look at…” – Simon O’Carrigan

The Art Life

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