Posts Tagged ‘Lionel Bawden

10
Dec
11

Exhibition: ‘Lionel Bawden: Pattern spill’ at Karen Woodbury Gallery, Richmond

Exhibition dates: 23rd November – 17th December 2011

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In the self contained world of commercial “art to go” galleries, this exhibition is the apotheosis of that form. The work is astonishly beautiful, refined and self contained. Drawing on references to Islamic art, Brancusi (Endless Column), stalactites, wafting sea sponges and the changeable camouflage patterns of sea creatures, the sculptures are perfect in visualisation, creation, contemplation and containment.

Sitting on coloured perspex shelves the patterns spills of coloured Staedtler pencils explore “themes of flux, transformation and repetition as preconditions to our experience of the physical world.” The titles of the work hint at such an exploration: Double VisionTrance-muterSecretionLosing Containment, Pattern Spill.

How I wish, long, crave to own one and I am not alone: on the opening night nearly all the sculptures were already sold! Obviously people recognise the uniqueness and beauty of this work.

And yet …

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Part of               me

.           longs
.                                  for    a
 .     broken
pencil,
.                         a
snapped           t/wig,
.                                  something
.                                           out of place
that puts
.                                pattern to
.                    shame.

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For only in mutation is pattern given relevance (and this is what the irregularity of ‘spill’ is supposed to be about). The flow of the Pattern Spill sculptures are the only ones that get close to this mutation and that in a pretty, ordered way.

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“What happens in the case of mutation? Consider the example of the genetic code. Mutation normally occurs when some random event (for example, a burst of radiation or a coding error) disrupts an existing pattern and something else is put in its place instead. Although mutation disrupts pattern, it also presupposes a morphological standard against which it can be measured and understood as mutation … Mutation is critical because it names the bifurcation point at which the interplay between pattern and randomness causes the system to evolve in a new direction…

The randomness to which mutation testifies is implicit in the very idea of pattern, for only against the background of nonpattern can pattern emerge. Randomness is the contrasting term that allows pattern to be understood as such.”1

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Instead of pattern “something else is put in its place instead.” I don’t get that here. Yes, these are beautiful, contemplative sculptures but one wonders how they will go on revealing themselves over months and years. I yearn for the prick of their imperfection.

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Many thankx to Karen Woodbury Gallery for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

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Lionel Bawden
Double Vision
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 23.0 x 26.0 x 7.0 cm
shelf: 7.5 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Trance-muter
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 32.0 x 26.0 x 7.5 cm
shelf: 7.5 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Secretion
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 31.0 x 25.0 x 17.0 cm
shelf: 7.5 x 45.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Losing Containment
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form 1: 31.5 x 24.0 x 12.0 cm
form 2: 33.5 x 33.0 x 26.0 cm
shelf: 15.0 x 120.0 x 30.0 cm

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“Lionel Bawden’s exhibition Pattern Spill will comprise of a range of small-scale objects created from vibrantly coloured pencils that are fused and sculpted together. By working with hexagonal coloured pencils as a sculptural material, Bawden is able to reconfigure and carve a range of amorphous shapes that convey movement and process. Bawden explores themes of flux, transformation and repetition as preconditions to our experience of the physical world.

This new body of work deals with ideas of control and collapse, surface and interior and organic patterns and energies through static three-dimensional objects. Bawden’s sculptures explore larger ideas beyond the work and relate to societal and natural systems, cycles and structures. Through his work, Bawden communicates macro ideas through micro detail. The works in Pattern spill become vessels for contemplation.

Alongside the sculptures there will also be a range of small meticulous drawings of vast hexagonal cells included in the exhibition. These drawings will act as companions to the sculptures, assisting to convey Bawden’s oblique explorations and meditations of the human condition.”

Text from the Karen Woodbury Gallery website

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Lionel Bawden
Pattern Spill
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form:30.0 x 23.5 x 33.0 cm
shelf: 15.0 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Patttern Spill III
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 31.0 x 23.0 x 34.0 cm
shelf: 15.0 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Secretion III
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 35.0 x 26.5 x 15.0 cm
shelf: 15.0 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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Lionel Bawden
Elevation
2011
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac on perspex shelf
form: 42.5 x 15.0 x 7.0 cm
shelf: 7.5 x 30.0 x 30.0 cm

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1. Hayles, Katherine. How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics.
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999, pp.30-33.

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Karen Woodbury Gallery
4, Albert Street
Richmond, Vic 3121

Opening hours: Wed – Sat 11-5pm

Karen Woodbury Gallery website

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26
May
10

Exhibition: ‘The Navigators’ at Karen Woodbury Gallery, Melbourne

Exhibition dates: 5th May – 29th May 2010

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Lionel Bawden, Penny Byrne, Nicholas Folland, Locust Jones, Rhys Lee, Rob McHaffie, Derek O’Connor, Alex Spremberg, Madonna Staunton

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Some good work in this exhibition – especially the Staedtler hexagonal coloured pencil constructions by Lionel Bawden (click on all the photographs below to see a larger version). Beautifully crafted by hand they remind me of ghosts, the ‘millefiori’ (thousand flowers) of Italian glass and the inside of caverns with their stalactites. Many thankx to Karen Woodbury Gallery for allowing me to publish the photographs.

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Lionel Bawden
formless worlds move through me
2010
coloured Staedtler pencils, epoxy, incralac
51.0 x 51.0 x 9.5 cm

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Alex Spremberg
Inside skins
2002

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The Navigators is a group exhibition that features the work of: Lionel Bawden, Penny Byrne, Nicholas Folland, Locust Jones, Rhys Lee, Rob McHaffie, Derek O’Connor, Alex Spremberg and Madonna Staunton. The exhibition aims to investigate work that contextually blurs familiar objects with new forms and environments. These artists have been selected for their interest in ideas of assemblage and re-use of pre-existing materials. Working across a range of media, each artist in the exhibition employs a process of manipulation to create completely different concepts and forms with their finished works. These works comprise of found objects and assembled from disparate elements, scavenged or foraged by the artists and juxtaposed in inventive ways. All works included in The Navigators take on their own form and imbue a new meaning to the original source materials.

Not originally intended as art materials, yet these artists have seen potential for a new idea in the materials; creating a new thought for the object. The original useful element of the preformed material thus comes under more aesthetic and creative significance. The impetus for such artistic practice is located in a desire by these artists to re-use, re-model, reshape and recycle within their practices. Despite an obvious interest and emphasis in the materiality of the works, the conceptual underpinning are the key motivation within these varying works and pose questions regarding the value of the objects within society. The artists included in The Navigators are continuously surveying and navigating their practice, allowing for deeper exploration in their work.

The exhibition will include various two and three-dimensional objects that interact with each other in unique ways. In the example of Lionel Bawden’s sculptures, his work exploits hexagonal coloured pencils as a sculptural material, reconfiguring and carving into amorphous shapes. Here the rich qualities of colour are explored as pencils are carved, shaped and fused together. Bawden explores themes of flux, transformation, rhythm and repetition as preconditions to our experience of the physical world. Bawden’s wall mounted works ‘the caverns of temporal suspension’ explore shapes within and outside the work as they hover ominously, melting, conjoined, growing, in transformation. These works are at the forefront of his current practice.
 Lionel Bawden website

Nicholas Folland’s Navigator sculptures are indicative Folland’s continued interest in utilising, modifying and experimenting with various sourced materials. These sculptures comprise of various upturned intricately detailed crystal objects that sit above a wood paneled shelf. These glass object are lit and act as beacons or floating satellite cities. Folland personifies the entrepid creative explorer via his navigation of various found materials.
 Nicholas Folland website

Alex Spremberg’s work Inside Skins highlights the artist’s accidental processes at work. This sculptural piece was made as an ancilliary to his broader practice – working with acrylic, enamel and varnish on board and canvas. These objects where literally created via chance − an after thought that was noticed to be a finished piece in its own right. Left to dry within their containers these ‘skins’ were extracted and proved to provide aesthetic attraction and conceptual ideas of the ready-made.”

Press release from the Karen Woodbury Gallery website

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Nicholas Folland
Navigators 1
2008
glassware, table and lightbox
25.0 x 110.0 x 87.0 cm

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Nicholas Folland
Navigators 2
2008
glassware, table and lightbox
25.0 x 110.0 x 87.0 cm

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Karen Woodbury Gallery
4, Albert Street
Richmond, Vic 3121

Opening hours: Wed – Sat 11-5pm

Karen Woodbury Gallery website

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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes the Art Blart blog which reviews exhibitions in Melbourne, Australia and posts exhibitions from around the world. He has a Dr of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne and is currently studying a Master of Art Curatorship at The University of Melbourne.

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