Fiona Rae at Timothy Taylor Gallery
The Timothy Taylor Gallery is now presenting the fourth solo exhibition of Fiona Rae’s work. Much more achromatic than previously – though no less interesting – the presentation marks a development in the British artist’s practice.
Comprised of a suite of paintings and a series of small-scale charcoal drawings – a new medium for the artist – Rae takes viewers on an exploration of abstract, greyscale figures. In the first room, thick paint stokes strike outward towards the frame of the paintings, wielding a threat toward the observer. As the scope of the room is followed, however, the lines become less sharp, and the colours less dark. In this journey, the focal points of the paintings become gradually blurred, and the Photoshop-inflected present from which Rae takes an influence for this collection becomes apparent.
The second room boasts a series of drawings that force the viewer up close; here the characters are a little clearer, although the abstract element of the paintings is carried through. Faces and flowers are rendered explosively while sets of eyes seem to surround the figures from every angle. There’s a pop art aesthetic to some of them, pulling viewers in closer and pushing them back all at once.
Like all of Rae’s work, the process that has gone in to each piece is clearly visible – bold stokes made in paint and charcoal. Unlike what has come previously, however, there is a lack of vibrant colours and dripping paint. Instead, every stroke seems perfectly placed, creating patterns that are beautiful to look at.
Rae describes the notion of erasure in this collection: “At the same time both longing to make a figure appear and wishing to remain in the field of abstraction.” Observing this collection, it’s possible for the viewer to fall into this field of abstraction. What will come next in this artist’s new chapter?
Fiona Rae is at Timothy Taylor Gallery from 22nd April to 30th May 2015, for further information visit here.