Luke Elwes: the path, the thread; the water, the depths

Luke Elwes card .jpg

An exhibition of my new work runs through March at the Adam Gallery in London. The following is an extract from the catalogue essay written by Andrew Lambirth:

Constable spoke of landscape painting as a branch of natural philosophy, and there is a case for the otherworldly landscapes of Luke Elwes to be seen as a branch of philosophical enquiry. Elwes explores the landscape of memory, the history and spirit of places, but at the same time evokes the journey into self, which is not about the indulgences of autobiography or self-expression, but primarily concerned with the intermingled layering of time and experience. He takes a particular path, chooses to follow certain threads, and spins out his indefinite painterly narratives in imagery of a delicacy that seems to contradict its formal robustness. He works with trace rather than statement, with suggestion rather than description. He aims to capture atmosphere and the ephemeral effect, but also the underlying truths which hold the key to the pattern.

Elwes makes a kind of celestial confetti, a serene fusion of light and the motes dancing in it. He might also be painting a million million prayers, written on multi-coloured scraps of paper and scattered to the ends of the earth, falling alike on fallow ground or fertile, but all heard by God. Whatever its cause, there is a quiet joy to his meditations, which chimes well with the understated beauty of his images. (Andrew Lambirth 2011)

Silent Kingdom. Adam Gallery, 24 Cork Street, London W1. March 1st - 21st 2011