George Blacklock, Detail from Pieta XI, 2006, oil on canvas, 153 x 122 cm (c) George Blacklock, Courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York
George Blacklock, Detail from Pieta XI, 2006, oil on canvas, 153 x 122 cm (c) George Blacklock, Courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

Slipping Glimpsers is the admirably titled joint exhibition by Dean of Chelsea College of Art George Blacklock and the filmmaker and photographer Gary Oldman.

Said title is a nod to Expressionist painter Willem De Kooning and refers to a process of continually observing one’s own thoughts and sensations during the process of painting.

Intuitive observation and retrieval is the common thread linking the two artists, who became firm friends 30 years ago. They formed a band together and worked on the 1984 BBC film Honest, Decent and True.

In this two-man show, Oldman exhibits photography from film-sets whilst Blacklock displays paintings of densely populated pictorial spaces, filled with a sonorous quality.

George Blacklock, Pieta XI, 2006, oil on canvas, 153 x 122 cm (c) George Blacklock, Courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York
George Blacklock, Pieta XI, 2006, oil on canvas, 153 x 122 cm (c) George Blacklock, Courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London and New York

Blacklock’s painting Pieta XI (2006) is a sensorial transcription of Michelangelo’s Pietà sculpture.

The painting transmits an unreservedly tactile, physical, and personal account of the internal psychological effect of the sculpture.

There is interplay between layers of varying material viscosities; Prussian blue with a yellow veil over a red ground accompanied by white accents.

The yellow sweeps over blue creating green to blue tones. Colours are encouraged to bleed, overspill and resurface as pentimenti.

Intertwined forms, colour and line are put into tension and dance as these forms fuse and evolve.

It is a ‘linguistic’ inventiveness reminiscent of the playful and visually plastic pictographic writing system of the Mayans.

Slipping Glimpsers
14 April – 14 May 2016
Flowers Gallery
82 Kingsland Road, E2 8DPz
flowersgallery.com

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