A New Morning – Contemporary Painting & Works on Paper Exhibition – 13th – 25th April 2021
A New Morning
Works on Paper & Contemporary Painting Exhibition
13th – 25th April 2021
Opening Wednesday 14th April 2021
Instagram live 6.00 GMT
Hanna Maarit Jauhiainen
For the title of this exhibition we have taken inspiration from exhibiting artist Hanna Maarit Jauhiainen and her watercolour painting, A New Morning. The sense of optimism and rejuvenation that this title connotes is overt in the work of so many of the artists on view in our latest show. There is an emphasis on our environment, and the renewal that comes with spring, but also a reawakening of our relationships – on human connection and togetherness.
Finnish artist Riitta Hellén-Vuoti returns to the gallery with her abstract piece, It Happens, a layered painterly tapestry that glistens with an infective optimism and sparkles in luxurious gold and purple. Micaela Summers’ landscapes express the turning of the seasons with a joyful and expressive colour palette, whilst the work of the mixed-media artist Paulie X looks at the theme of change from a more political perspective – exploring societal change and challenging racial prejudices.
Perhaps most prescient in the minds of many of our artists as well as visitors to the gallery is an unyielding hopefulness for things to come, and a return to many of the joys that we once took for granted. We look enviously upon the lino-cut prints of beachside piers by the Sussex-based artist Wayne Longhurst, and the minimal figurative compositions created by the water colourist Sue Davis, which now have an added element of desirability for the closeness of the transient figures she depicts.
With Georgina Hustler’s paintings of rave and club culture we delve into an environment that for many has been sorely missed throughout this period. In her own words Hustler’s paintings ‘celebrate when people had the freedom to bump into old friends, avoid boozy rugby lads and dance all night with the girl from work that they last spoke to three years ago.’ The cropped view point positions us right in amongst the sweaty mess of the dance floor. Although the sights and smells that Hustler’s paintings engender might fee like a lifetime away, her paintings are forward-looking to a life post social-restrictions.
Please join us in celebrating the work of these talented artists when we reopen on the 13th April.
Opening Wednesday 14th April 2021
Instagram live 6.00 GMT
JoanCelestin is a mixed media artist who also uses digital technology to paint as a “Heal and Paint’ therapeutic process to realign focus and purposes of being through reflective art journaling. Joan undertook an Art Therapy FoundationCourse at (BAAT) British Association of Art Therapists. Celestin also studied at Transpersonal Arts for Health and Wellbeing at Tobias School of Art and Therapy where she explored a more holistic approach to learning about art and therapy processes. However, “Heal and Paint” is her own digital process of using Art for Therapy.
Calming Blueness is a collection of digitally painted images, which form part of a wider collection of paintings created as art to enhance wellbeing. These images were created during nocturne whilst experiencing physical pain and insomnia. Art is an innate source of energy when tapped into can transform our human capacity for compassion and personal growth and further allow us to explore our emotions through paintings as storyboards mapping our life journeys. That’s the real essence of Joan Celestin’s art. Furthermore, Art enhances our living environment and sharing an emotion that connects our human consciousness may also encourage others to explore their own creativity through art-making.
We are proud to welcome back to the gallery Riitta Hellén-Vuoti, with her new spellbinding painting It Happens. Based in Kuopio, Finland, Hellén-Vuoti explores humanity and the nature of life through her large-scale abstract paintings.
It Happens is a layered painterly tapestry of various mark-marking techniques. The broad and energised gold brush marks comprise the majority of the painting and vary in their translucency, built up in layers across the central band of the painting. Hellén-Vuoti’s patterned purple acrylic is luminescent against the dark background and a swirly hot pink orbits in the top third of the canvas. Her working style is spontaneous and organic using various techniques and materials to create her interpretations.
A specialist in psychiatry and psychotherapy, the artist sees her paintings and poems as ‘mindscapes’ and believes in an interdisciplinary approach between the two mediums. Hellén-Vuoti has exhibited in London and Milan (2020) as well as various galleries around Finland.
‘When I was young, I thought I would grow up to be painter, and now life has managed to make it possible.’
– Riitta Hellén-Vuoti.
The Brick Lane Gallery is pleased to showcase the work of Georgina Hustler, an artist from West Yorkshire who graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a History of Art and Fine Art BA in 2020.
Georgina paints collages of unposed, authentic figures from photographs of the current club/rave scene and youth culture. Each individual in her paintings has been selected from a photograph. The paintings then become vibrant scenes of multiple character driven narratives. You will identify with having seen at least one of the figures in the painting; you may even spot yourself and your friends in the picture. Her painting style has a spontaneous, raw quality to keep the paintings feeling honest, as her work celebrates the imperfect quirks of life. The blurred perspectives, and ambiguous settings allow the viewer to place the scene in somewhere familiar to them. The scenes should bring people together over their shared experiences.
The gritty, dark, dingy smoking areas and dance floors in all their grunginess, set a backdrop to many people’s most fun, messy and entertaining nights. The paintings celebrate when people had the freedom to bump into old friends, avoid boozy rugby lads and dance all night with the girl from work that they last spoke to three years ago. During the intense period of lockdown and of isolation, for many people there was an enhanced feeling of loneliness and alienation from society. This work should make you look back fondly of life before lockdown and be optimistic about life after restrictions are lifted.
We are very happy to announce the exhibition of Wayne Longhurst, a self-taught artist working in lino. His subject matter is varied and unrestrictive, he captures anything and everything that seizes his imagination and pushes him to create ever-more complex compositions with multiple layers and colours. Shortlisted for the 2020 RA Summer Exhibition, Longhurst endeavors to create prints that deny their medium and instead often appear to be fine art paintings or realistic photos. He primarily uses the reduction technique, whereby the final piece is printed from a single piece of lino. The detail thus achieved by cutting away (reducing) the lino between each printed layer, resulting in a very limited edition.
With each new piece the artist pushes himself further, through using new techniques, restricting the colour palette, or varying the number of layers in the printing process. His goal is to draw the viewer into the piece only for them to then realize it is not a photograph but created using the lino cut technique
Exhibiting alongside the other artists in our A New Morning exhibition is Paulie X.
A British-Nigerian, London-based, artist working in mixed media and specialising in portraiture, figurative art and symbolic painting.
The pieces in this exhibition comprise two intersecting series of work that the artist has been absorbed with for the past five years: ‘Black Kings’ and ‘X_Faces’. Created between April and August 2020 the five works currently on show in the gallery are more recent examples of Paulie X’s explorative journey into identity and societal prejudices. Fuzzy Hair Wanted FBI Poster 867.615 G is a reimagining of the FBI wanted poster for Angela Davis. Forming part of the artist’s ‘X_Faces’ series, the work is a strong and defiant feminist statement that draws on the iconography ofBlack Power politics. Newspaper clippings and headlines circle Davis whilst she stares out of the ‘poster’ expressionless, aloof but unwavering in her confrontational challenge to the observer.
The effect of figurative expression/inexpression is of particular visual interest to the artist, who describes how the “inscrutability of facial ‘inexpression’” is an equally powerful visual communication tool as facial expression. He utilizes his work as a tool to foster communication and conversation. In his visual studies of the human form he looks inward with a view to better understanding ourselves and the human condition at large.
‘I aim to help people do this, looking inward by looking outward, through these visual ‘mirrors’ …these eyes that stare back at you unwavering. To challenge our own assumptions or beliefs about the characters we observe in their inscrutable gazes back at us. And why we think what we think.’
Excerpt from Paulie X, Artist Statement.
Sue Davis is a self taught Titchfield based artist, whose watercolour studies of blurred, indeterminate figures convey much of the quiet observation felt in the drawings and paintings of the Lancashire artist L.S Lowry. Davis’ work however is considerably more ethereal in nature. Her figures appear immaterial and transient, an effect achieved by the layers of translucent watercolour paint. The artist’s figurative studies are expertly executed in a way that provides her figures with agency and character; every anonymous figure has a story. Although non-specific and shadowy in appearance they are familial and endearing in their recognisability.
In Walking the Poochies we see two figures with three small dogs on leads. The figure on the left wears a beret and a fur-collared coat, whilst her animated companion appears mid-stride. Executed with minimal paintwork the three small dogs buzz with energy as they bouncearound the lower third of the painting. Waiting… but what for skilfully captures the behaviour of nine figures in a queue. The second figure, painted in a dark blue, cranes his neck to see the end of the line (we assume it extends onwards beyond the picture’s frame) and we can read boredom and impatience in the body language of the figures behind him. Painted in abstract watercolour, this painting is a brilliant observational study of human behaviour.
Micaela Summers is an artist based in the outskirts of Lucerne in Switzerland. After moving around with her family for many years, living in Sweden, the US, and Argentina, Summers settled in Switzerland and began taking oil painting lessons in 2011. She quickly discovered her passion and built on her skill by taking courses throughout the years with different teachers, working in other mediums and learning new techniques.
The artist’s current genre of choice is landscapes, inspired by nature, her surroundings, places she has visited, and music. Summers’ style is realistic yet direct. Autumn Days depicts a landscape view of a field framed by a large blossom tree. Nearly two thirds of the canvas is dedicated to capturing the impressive sunset that illuminates the town in the distance in a deep and warm orange glow. Summers excels in capturing the colours of nature. Freckles of crimson pink comprise the flowers at the edge of the patch and perfectly compliment the green of the field. Whilst the blue, grey, orange, and purple tones in the sky masterfully capture the turn of the sky at the end of the day.
“When I create my artworks, I immerse into this world where I get lost and forgetabout everything around me, except for the music playing in the back (which I always have) and I stay in there, creating and discovering hues with my oilpaints in my palette until I finish. And then, then I find myself exhausted.”
Excerpt from Micaela Summers, Artist Statement
Hanna Maarit Jauhiainen
The water colour paintings of Hanna Maarit Jauhiainen are magical. Her work incites the remembered sense of wonder, intrigue, and marvel of a childhood bedtime story and plays with scale in a way that transports us entirely back to our younger selves. In She fell asleep under bellflowers a woman lies horizontally beneath billowing bellflowers depicted in a rich cobalt blue. Rather than the flowers being dramatically enlarged, the effect is of the woman being reduced in scale to a size that she fits comfortably within the crop of wild flowers.
A sense of enchantment is felt throughout Maarit Jauhiainen’s work; In the mischievous expression of the protagonist in The Moss Princes, and the smiles that peer our from behind the flowers in Children of the Shadows. The titles of her watercolours also suggest at dramatic and enchanting narratives, Longing for you and Beautiful Dreams match the beauty of the visual work in their poetic intonation.
Maarit Jauhiainen was drawn to the visual arts at a young age. She drew prolifically, studied abundantly, and immersed herself in visual culture. Following an extended break from art and a subsequent health scare, Maarit Jauhiainen now pursues her passion with focus, creating stories of hope, compassion and sensitivity. With regards to her choice of medium the artist describes the watercolour technique to be both thrilling and challenging, comparing it in this way to life itself. ‘It is here and now, just like life is. You may think you can control it but it always finds its own ways. And that makes watercolours, art and life so wonderful and unique.’
‘My heartfelt thanks to you who are here right now. I hope that my paintings bring you joy and comfort.’
– Hanna Maarit Jauhiainen
The Brick Lane Gallery
216 Brick Lane | London | E1 6SA