Damian Moppett: The Sculptor’s Studio is a Painting

21 May–26 June 2010

Damian Moppett

Catri­ona Jef­fries is pleased to announce the forth­com­ing exhi­bi­tion, The Sculptor’s Stu­dio is a Paint­ing by Dami­an Mop­pett. Work­ing in an expand­ed field of pro­duc­tion that includes paint­ing, sculp­ture, pho­tog­ra­phy, draw­ing and col­lage, this new body of work con­tin­ues the evolv­ing tra­jec­to­ry of Moppett’s stu­dio-based prac­tice.

The paint­ings, sculp­tures and ink draw­ings which form the exhi­bi­tion func­tion as for­mal exer­cis­es where rec­og­niz­able motifs from past works by the artist depart, through their process of mak­ing, into the realm of abstrac­tion for the first time. Mate­ri­al­ly method­i­cal in their pro­duc­tion, the works mark a depar­ture for Mop­pett in their inten­tion­al dis­guis­ing of art his­tor­i­cal ref­er­ences. Rather than explic­it­ly incor­po­rat­ing his usu­al nods to art-his­tor­i­cal fig­ures such as Gus­ton, Bran­cusi, Moore and Caro, Mop­pett con­sid­ers tropes of dis­play which func­tion to sup­port the process of refer­ral which takes the site of Moppet’s own prac­tice as a scene of ori­gin from which to draw from, thus cre­at­ing a pri­vate and eso­teric lan­guage of form. Con­tin­u­ing to add to the het­ero­ge­neous visu­al library from which he per­sis­tent­ly extrap­o­lates, the inclu­sion of a pair of framed ink draw­ings made dur­ing a recent res­i­den­cy in Lon­don, UK, are one of the myr­i­ad points from which the work began.

The image of the burn­ing can­dle and the space of the stu­dio appear spo­rad­i­cal­ly, yet through Moppett’s impromp­tu means these rec­og­niz­able images slow­ly dis­ap­pear. Shift­ing the focus to the inci­den­tal out­lines and forms which appear through an accu­mu­la­tive and self-reflex­ive method, her­met­ic sur­faces emerge which main­tain the tan­gen­tial and anachro­nis­tic nature of Moppett’s allu­sion to his­tor­i­cal and sub­jec­tive tra­jec­to­ries.

By cre­at­ing the series of sculp­tur­al works in the same intu­itive man­ner in which he cre­ates paint­ings, Mop­pet is now able to fold the con­di­tion of the stu­dio, the frame of paint­ing and the sculp­tur­al are­na into con­stant­ly shift­ing lay­ers of visu­al lan­guage. The his­tor­i­cal speci­fici­ty of the frames cre­ate a frame­work from which these arcane abstrac­tions become self-aware of their sta­tus as objects and are thus able to trans­mute effort­less­ly from the sur­face of the can­vas to the arma­ture of sculp­ture and back to the space of the stu­dio itself.

For fur­ther infor­ma­tion or press enquires please con­tact Catri­ona Jef­fries or Anne Low at +1 604 736 1554.