September 10 - October 10, 2015
Kardosh Projects, in association with Marion Scott Gallery, is pleased to announce an exhibition of new works by Vancouver painter Vicky Marshall. Opening September 10 and continuing through October 10, Vicky Marshall: New Works will present 8 new large canvases produced within the last two years. The solo exhibition, the artist’s first in Vancouver in more than five years, will reveal a new phase in the evolution of Marshall’s practice. Perhaps best known for her expressionistic landscapes and images of urban street life, Marshall’s bold new series of works draws upon everyday objects as the starting point for her focused formal investigations. Also included in the exhibition is a series of related charcoal drawings similarly representing objects from daily life.
In her new paintings, Marshall’s attentiveness to the forms and textures of her everyday environment is combined with a more highly structured approach to pictorial form, resulting in images that are at once visceral and considered. “In past work, I have used everyday objects as a subject matter for walking a line between abstraction and representation,” said Marshall in a statement. “In my recent paintings, I am moving further away from narrative in choosing objects purely for how they allow me to define space.”
The works featured in this exhibition evolved from a well-known series of large-format paintings of bird’s nests that the artist completed five years ago. As with the earlier series, these newer works bristle with aggressive vigor and bold technique, the difference being that they depict man-made objects as opposed to those found in nature. The objects portrayed here include energy saving light bulbs on their sides, spools of string, a set of keys, and, in charcoal, a shiny chrome teakettle. Marshall’s attention to mundane items from modern life, and her transformation of their humble forms into subjects of large paintings, can be seen as belonging to the tradition of 1960s Pop art. Indeed, to make the ordinary seem extraordinary is one of Marshall’s key objectives. But whereas Pop typically relies on realism to achieve its ends, Marshall’s textured and passionately gestural canvases drip and ooze with abstract expressionist energy and physicality.
Many of the objects in Marshall’s paintings and drawings speak to the domestic world, reflecting a decidedly feminine sensibility—an aspect of her imagery that the artist freely acknowledges and accepts. Ultimately, however, Marshall sees the subject matter and its specific associations as secondary to her primary concern, which centres on the representation of forms in space. “It’s not what you paint, it’s how you paint it,” she states. Drawn to forms with unusual shapes and volumes, Marshall’s most exciting challenge, as she sees it, is to represent objects in abstract space. While the works in the current exhibition are in many cases more formally abstract than in the past, Marshall’s approach is consistent with her 30-year practice, which has always been concerned to celebrate and explore the tension between abstraction and representation.
Vicky Marshall: New Works is the artist’s first solo exhibition with Kardosh Projects.