Jo McGonigal


I begin with a visual analysis of historical Baroque painting (e.g. Poussin, Vermeer, etc) as a basis for understanding painting, not as a fixed identity but as a specific spatial construction with a pictorial vocabulary that articulates notions of the seen and unseen and movement on a flat surface.
 
These observations become translated through the construction of three-dimensional pictorial compositions ‘in between’ the space of painting and architecture.  The exhibition space evolves the work through its material and surface characteristics, its spatial facts. I use found and everyday materials to imply formal and conceptual qualities of transparency, light, opacity, verticality, proximity, distance, dealing with in how they are used a vernacular of painting.
 
The practice aims to provoke an artistic reorientation towards painting that engages the sensorial and brings painting back into a materialist dialogue with real things in the world. Recent works have involved creating a large pink smoke cloud that dispersed within a former industrial warehouse space in Salford. In Glasgow I stretched a line in hi-chromatic yellow across the street between two red brick Edwardian buildings, 5 storeys high, directly through the window of a gallery space and into the building opposite. A recent show at Arthouse1, London involved creating a horizontal line of brass penetrating the wall of a Georgian townhouse, creating unstable, unfixed sight lines and disrupted viewing.
 
This work permits a re-evaluation of paintings relationship with space, where painting is matter and space, real and physical, and has little to do with flatness or the two-dimensional, allowing the viewer to establish a dual physical and optical relationship to the work.

www.jomcgonigal.co.uk