After transporting 'Source' from the studio to this luminous high ceilinged interior in The Hague for a Dutch collector I was fascinated to observe the shifting dialogue between image and space generated by the painting's new location.
RADIANCE, the current exhibition at Sladers Yard in Bridport is about the exploration of light in painting and includes work by Daisy Cook Luke Elwes, Alex Lowery and Emma Stibborn.
'For those who cannot get artist Luke Elwes’ peaceful, beautiful paintings out of their minds, he returns now for our second Radiance exhibition. A highly accomplished painter, Luke Elwes’s recent work is concerned with light. His paintings seem to ripple and reflect like the surface of the water he uses to create his work. Working in layers either with oil on canvas or different media including crayon, watercolour and found materials on paper, Luke Elwes’s gentle mark-making invites one to look into the painting as if it was a pool of water.'
RADIANCE will be on show at Sladers Yard Gallery, Bridport UK until 22 January 2017. Further information and images are available on the gallery website here
THE MUSEO DELLA GRAFICA, HOUSED IN THE BEAUTIFUL SETTING OF THE PALAZZO LANFRANCHI ON THE RIVER ARNO IN PISA IS THE FINAL STOP FOR THE 'VITAL SIGNS' ITALIAN TOUR. THE EXHIBITION RUNS THROUGHOUT JULY & AUGUST 2016
This summer the National Trust are hosting 'Luke Elwes: Floating World', an exhibition of recent work on paper at their new gallery on Constable’s historic site of Flatford Mill. Exhibition details and text available here
'In his works on paper Luke Elwes captures the transient nature of place and memory. His chosen territory is close by the Stour estuary and similarly flat under an East Anglian sky but quite different to that sense of timeless order and apparent tranquility found in Constable country’.
The exhibition opens on 2 July and runs until 30 August 2016 at the National Trust Gallery, Flatford Mill, Suffolk CO7 6UL
The recent installation of two large paintings commissioned for a private collection in the UK
This image - suggesting both a springing forth and a seasonal shift - is derived from a large oak tree that sits by the water’s edge on the east coast: a totemic presence, at once resisting and shaped by the elemental force of tides and weather. What appears at ground level to be silhouetted branches rising up into a bright blue expanse of sky and water might also be viewed from above as an intricate web of lines recalling the branching tributaries of a river. It is a territory punctuated with yellow markings, scattered fragments of sunlight that also suggest an eruption of spring growth.
A web of black birch and silver on water, on pasture,
Netting the pillars of colour, lacing the pillars of light,
A reticulation of ambiguous space we gaze into, through,
Yet always end on the surface, where we start.
This is a time to take refuge in the connectedness of things and
Forsake the privileged instant for the gradual and continuous.
Our moments mate and spawn like the forfeit of
One decision towards a greater shared reality,
Improving truth with pattern,
The solid dissolving in a new winterlight,
A branching and echoing interruption of
Horizon or vanishing point.
In the business of looking, I collect, you surrender:
But the least push deserves an answering pull.
Christmas Poem 2015 by Andrew Lambirth
In his recent work Luke Elwes conjures up a particular space where land and water meet, where the shifting light radiates through a tree line or across coastal marshland and where the tides move back and forth through a delicate maze of creeks and channels. They reveal chance encounters with a myriad of visual stimuli: passing birds, rolling mist, scattered flora, wind blown leaves or drifting shapes, floating on, reflected in, the passing streams.
They are a fragile record of process and time, the uncertain result of a particular moment of elemental engagement, made without correction in one sitting. The location varies - sometimes close to home, sometimes in remote locations - and provides just a beginning, a way of collecting particles of colour and light, and a way of observing the play of prevailing conditions on a surface which, once it is scattered with incidental markings and stained with coloured pigment and organic matter, is then allowed to become saturated by the surrounding waters. And each time the resulting image belongs as much to the elements as to the artist who began it.