Daniel Rios Rodriguez
about the artists
b. 1959, Derry, Northern Ireland.
Since the 1980s, Willie Doherty has been a pioneering figure in contemporary art film and photography. At once highly seductive and visually disorientating, Doherty’s artworks tend to begin as responses to specific terrains (most often mysterious isolated settings; places, we suspect, with a troubled past) and evolve as complex reflections on how we look at such locations – or on what stories might be told about their hidden histories.
'For almost four decades, the art of Willie Doherty has been profoundly affected by border landscapes, border atmospheres, border experiences — in Ireland and beyond. Again and again, Doherty has haunted such spaces, wandering along country roads or lingering at suburban margins, exploring locations where, visibly or invisibly, one state connects with another. (Or, put differently: the points where one state is separated from another.) He has been compelled to visit and revisit peripheral zones, condemned to reckon repeatedly with their fraught histories and disrupted geographies.' - Declan Long 'Where are we now?' from Willie Doherty, Where/Dove published to accompany the artist's 2021 exhibition at Fondazione Modena, Milan and Ulster Museum, Belfast.
b. 1962, Newtownards, Northern Ireland.
Mark Francis’ ongoing fascination with the ‘mysteries of the universe’ and in particular sound recordings provides a point of departure in the studio. An invisible energy which powers all cosmic activity including our very own existence is given a form, colour and structure in these new, hypnotic paintings.
Our current show at the gallery is Merlin James 'Window' comprised of works completed over the last three years, made at James's studio near the river Clyde in Glasgow. In these paintings James refers to the view of the river, but also to the surrounding buildings and the more interior life of their occupants. While some of the works seem to approach total abstraction, others are very specific in their representation.
This exhibition will coincide with a dedicated room of paintings in the survey of contemporary painting, ‘Mixing It Up: Painting Today' at the Hayward Gallery, London (9 September - 12 December)
Elizabeth Magill has developed a highly idiosyncratic approach to painting and printmaking. She is celebrated for her evocative landscapes, which capture atmospheric conditions with great sensitivity: the luminosity of daybreak, or the cool glow of moonlight. The scenes appear to be sited on the edge of urbanity – roofs, street-lamps or telephone wires can occasionally be sighted in the background, but human figures are rare. Instead, clusters of trees dominate Magill’s compositional arrangements, and only through their branches can hedges, hills and radiant skies be glimpsed.
b. 1984, Oldenburg, Germany.
Jan Pleitner creates striking and expressive abstract painting driven by subconscious thought. Often painted in short bursts of time, or even marathon single sittings, the works are full of movement and energy, with jolting lines pulling the eye up and down the canvas. Pleitner’s highly physical approach to painting sees him scrape through layers of paint as readily as he builds them up, resulting in a highly tactile canvas. His deep colour palette is lively and mercurial, with elemental patches, streaks and lines bleeding into one another and jostling for space aggressively, but not inharmoniously. Imbued with symbolic properties, they point towards a synesthesiac sensibility.
Daniel Rios Rodriguez
b. 1978, Killeen, TX
Daniel Rios Rodriquez paintings, assemblages and sculptures explore a personal symbolism rich in association and ressonance. These paintings are built up collages of painting, found objects and ornate wooden frames articulating landscape, still life and pattern while continually informed by his surroundings, the American south-west. The artist's Mexican-American heritage and his interest in pre-Columbian iconography inform this work that celebrates colour, vibrancy and materials in a unique and intimate way.
b.1967, Zurich, Switzerland
Liliane Tomasko’s abstract paintings have long explored our various emotional and physiological states, the latency of our dream world and the power of our memories. Tomasko often begins with a study of the personal effects of everyday domesticities such as bedding or clothing to create work that suggests a gateway into the realms of sleep and dreaming; delving into the gulf between what we understand as the ‘conscious’ and ‘subconscious.’