Georgll Uvs: Full Circle – The Beauty of Inevitability at Saatchi Gallery
Before studying fine art, Russian artist Georgll Uvs took a degree in geology. An interest in rocks and the formations of the natural world has followed him ever since, playing into his subsequent career as a painter. His works draw together tropes from art and science, exploring the confluence of these two subjects and challenging the viewer’s expectations of each: painting is approached with an unusual degree of technical control, while science is presented as an opportunity for creative exploration.
Uvs’s solo show at Saatchi Gallery, Full Circle: The Beauty of Inevitability, is full of imagery that recalls stratified landscapes and ruptures in the surface of the earth. The artist repeatedly plays with notions of scale; one image could represent a volcano, but it equally recalls a single-cell organism. Another evokes the watery world revealed under a microscope as much as it does the vastness of outer space.
The paintings constantly undermine the viewer’s impressions, particularly as the lighting keeps shifting between ordinary and ultraviolet. Uvs imbues some of his rich pigments with fluorescence, so the atmosphere of each work changes with the fluctuating light. The effect is surprising, and also great fun.
To create each piece the artist pours thick paints onto the surface of his canvas and then manipulates them from behind, never using a brush or interacting directly with the surface of the paint. The carefully controlled viscosity of his paints means that many of his canvases can take up to four years to dry. His method combines chance with precision, echoing the tension inherent in nature between geometric symmetry and free-flowing evolutionary change.
Featured Image: GeorgII Uvs, Wings No.2, 2016
Full Circle: The Beauty of Inevitability is at Saatchi Gallery from 24th January until 3rd February 2019. For further information visit the exhibition’s website here.