• EXHIBITIONS

    2020 - Nuages

    Adam Gottlieb, Bronte Stolz, Victoria Stolz


    Exhibition dates: 6 - 16 February 2020
    Opening: Thursday 6 February, 6 - 8pm

    NUAGES (clouds)

    Victoria Stolz, Bronte Stolz (unconfirmed relation), Adam Gottlieb

    You have a vague childhood memory of driving with your family towards the mountains. The clouds obscured their heights, you were heading up into the mist. Prepared with a jar you were resolved to catch some cloud, to keep it and to study its ever-changing form, to watch it rain. You treat the cloud as a sentient being.

    The problem was that the cloud never arrived, it only ever revealed itself just beyond reach- in the near distance that would recede upon your advances. Standing on the side of the road, jar in hand, you contemplate the elusiveness of this phenomenon. It is a reality known from a distance, disappearing as you move closer. Staring into the jar and the accumulated condensation inside you were left defeated, and yet filled with a peculiar wonder. One potent enough to leave an impression deeply within your young mind, like a number in a “join the dots” whose finished image is one’s life.

    It is strange which early memories hold on to us, like brief sparks of a sudden self-awareness that open up one’s individual relation to the immense unknown. That memory is now only a scene that distorts with each re-membering (you see yourself standing there as a child, instead of seeing through your childhood gaze). Its original form is forgotten and the psycho-visual residue has become a symbol; one that contains a feeling, a narrative, an isolated building block in the foundations of personality.

    Like the clouds of childhood, memories lose consistency the closer we are to them. Reflection paradoxically makes sense of the past from within the present, while informing the present from a distorted past. Perhaps the totality of experience that informs our individuality is as fickle as the elephant you see in that fluffy white cumulus cloud; maybe in these projections we actually see ourselves. As our identity evolves through time, so too does the elephant change from its infancy into a dragon, a sports car, a beckoning hand… Or, as we take less time to lie barefooted on a patch of grass and stare innocently into a changing sky, our horizon will only be filled with “clouds”, a definition as arbitrary in capturing their qualities as the mythical narrative of a child’s imagination.

    As our childhood pareidolia[1] a watched the definitions of clouds shift form, so we continue to witness our structures of meaning shift throughout life. Inconsistency and semiotic elusiveness expose itself, fixed edges soften, substance is found only in residual condensation.
    -

    The paintings in this exhibition all deal with the futility of our grasping, and the naivety of trying to capture clouds in a jar.

    There is a slipperiness to the psychological and ideological meanings that we find within the unassuming objects delicately depicted in Bronte’s work. The choice of medium (the pile of velvet, fingerprints on brass) is suggestive itself of transience, ephemerality. The human hand carving out meaning that can just as easily be swiped away.
     

    Victoria’s works present us with an overwhelming superimposition of paint. From between the thicket of strokes dream-like visions emerge: something between a shadowy forest and the alluring void of tv static is present within her 40” inch canvases. Caught in the strands of dizzying gestural webs, anxiety verges on sublimity, and vision oscillates between lucidity and confusion.

    Adam's large nebulous paintings give us access to a stillness like that of the calm surface to a deep flowing river, or the slow rises and falls in the chest of one asleep. But the peace granted by the gently billowing forms and colours is simply the gateway enticing you through to a realm of more subtle psychic shifts and plays. Colours bleed into another, forms fade into glazes that give way to transparencies below. There is nothing to grasp onto, the desire to grasp itself washes away.

    The paradox of capturing elusiveness, giving form to formlessness, is contended with through the act of painting. Suspended in time upon canvas, skin and brass, an awareness of transience is somehow communicated into the future.

    Nuages is the ongoing pursuit of those elusive realities that beckon us through life, disappearing on arrival. Perhaps what was caught that day on the mountain was not the cloud, but the question of it.

    “Well something's lost, but something's gained
    In living every day”

    Joni Mitchell, Both Sides Now, Clouds (1969)

     

    [1] the human tendency to seek patterns in random information

    NUAGES (clouds)

    Victoria Stolz, Bronte Stolz (unconfirmed relation), Adam Gottlieb

    You have a vague childhood memory of driving with your family towards the mountains. The clouds obscured their heights, you were heading up into the mist. Prepared with a jar you were resolved to catch some cloud, to keep it and to study its ever-changing form, to watch it rain. You treat the cloud as a sentient being.

    The problem was that the cloud never arrived, it only ever revealed itself just beyond reach- in the near distance that would recede upon your advances. Standing on the side of the road, jar in hand, you contemplate the elusiveness of this phenomenon. It is a reality known from a distance, disappearing as you move closer. Staring into the jar and the accumulated condensation inside you were left defeated, and yet filled with a peculiar wonder. One potent enough to leave an impression deeply within your young mind, like a number in a “join the dots” whose finished image is one’s life.

    It is strange which early memories hold on to us, like brief sparks of a sudden self-awareness that open up one’s individual relation to the immense unknown. That memory is now only a scene that distorts with each re-membering (you see yourself standing there as a child, instead of seeing through your childhood gaze). Its original form is forgotten and the psycho-visual residue has become a symbol; one that contains a feeling, a narrative, an isolated building block in the foundations of personality.

    Like the clouds of childhood, memories lose consistency the closer we are to them. Reflection paradoxically makes sense of the past from within the present, while informing the present from a distorted past. Perhaps the totality of experience that informs our individuality is as fickle as the elephant you see in that fluffy white cumulus cloud; maybe in these projections we actually see ourselves. As our identity evolves through time, so too does the elephant change from its infancy into a dragon, a sports car, a beckoning hand… Or, as we take less time to lie barefooted on a patch of grass and stare innocently into a changing sky, our horizon will only be filled with “clouds”, a definition as arbitrary in capturing their qualities as the mythical narrative of a child’s imagination.

    As our childhood pareidolia[1] a watched the definitions of clouds shift form, so we continue to witness our structures of meaning shift throughout life. Inconsistency and semiotic elusiveness expose itself, fixed edges soften, substance is found only in residual condensation.
    -

    The paintings in this exhibition all deal with the futility of our grasping, and the naivety of trying to capture clouds in a jar.

    There is a slipperiness to the psychological and ideological meanings that we find within the unassuming objects delicately depicted in Bronte’s work. The choice of medium (the pile of velvet, fingerprints on brass) is suggestive itself of transience, ephemerality. The human hand carving out meaning that can just as easily be swiped away.
     

    Victoria’s works present us with an overwhelming superimposition of paint. From between the thicket of strokes dream-like visions emerge: something between a shadowy forest and the alluring void of tv static is present within her 40” inch canvases. Caught in the strands of dizzying gestural webs, anxiety verges on sublimity, and vision oscillates between lucidity and confusion.

    Adam's large nebulous paintings give us access to a stillness like that of the calm surface to a deep flowing river, or the slow rises and falls in the chest of one asleep. But the peace granted by the gently billowing forms and colours is simply the gateway enticing you through to a realm of more subtle psychic shifts and plays. Colours bleed into another, forms fade into glazes that give way to transparencies below. There is nothing to grasp onto, the desire to grasp itself washes away.

    The paradox of capturing elusiveness, giving form to formlessness, is contended with through the act of painting. Suspended in time upon canvas, skin and brass, an awareness of transience is somehow communicated into the future.

    Nuages is the ongoing pursuit of those elusive realities that beckon us through life, disappearing on arrival. Perhaps what was caught that day on the mountain was not the cloud, but the question of it.

    “Well something's lost, but something's gained
    In living every day”

    Joni Mitchell, Both Sides Now, Clouds (1969)

     

    [1] the human tendency to seek patterns in random information