CHRIS MOON – Monday Club at Gallery 46, Whitechapel, London, July 2018 – Back to the back streets of Whitechapel, back for a little bit more, back to Gallery 46, scene of that recent Paul Renner, Paul Sakoilsky coming together. Gallery 46 is proving to be one of East London’s more interesting galleries at the moment, the prospect of new work from painter Chris Moon in those beautiful rooms couldn’t really be resisted -, “a new series of paintings based on the artist’s daily cycle from his studio to London Fields Lido. – The first exhibition since 2016, including a series of studies created on a recent bank holiday Monday capturing the fleeting mass invasion of park and pool on a single sun-drenched afternoon”, the work in those rooms of the gallery really does feel like a hot day in London Fields, the perfect space to see the new work. The gallery itself is to be found in in a pair of newly renovated rather fascinating Georgian houses on Ashfield Street just behind the complex of old Whitechapel Hospital.buildings, a gallery set in two old houses knocked into one, a gallery spread out over three floors and eight rooms.
Chris Moon’s work is fresh, his light is refreshing, his paintings rather beautiful, his pieces glow, they shimmer, they’re probably nothing radically different, nothing revolutionary but then it doesn’t always have to be radically revolutionary and when he gets it right, like he mostly has with this show, then he really really does, everything here feels right, the paintings, the show, the hang. The London Fields studies work so well, you really can feel that sunshine, the hum of warmth in the green of the park, and those small circular paintings really do feel like the glimpses of the lido through the fence, the people in the pool, the splashes, the bodies, the sunshine the busy park, he has ‘it’ here, he has that feeling as you walk through in an almost detached while all around you people are seemingly having nothing but fun with all their friends.
The pieces that feature his “signature neon palette” really are something special, actually, you could argue they are radically different (and beautifully hung in here), and yes indeed, the “deft handling of figure and space, result in a gentle, yet urgent, invitation to join him in this private journey of a recluse; pressed to question his own place in the madness”. it really does get rather mad in London Fields in the summer, ir really does have you questioning your place here, especially for those of us who remember it when it wasn’t quite so fashionable around these parts (like Chris, I have a studio by the sunshine and madness of ever evolving London Fields – no longer the burnt out cars with “welcome to Hackney painted on them), and yes you do feel a painter almost invisibly observing, unnoticed by the hundreds (and hundreds) of people lost in their own worlds, lost in each other, there’s a lot to these paintings, to these studies, to these beautifully painted observations, to the light, the shimmer, to the bright orange edges of the canvas…
“Chris Moon is a self-taught British, contemporary artist with the unique ability to encompass a variety of techniques through vivid, emotional and at times, distinctly melancholic imagery. Expressed not only through images but the process in which he paints, his works often explore the painful,physical and emotional need for reinvention; resulting in his own mental state laid bare on the canvas. It is his combination of insight and integrity, as well as psychological and emotional force, to the genre of figurative and abstract art that has set him apart from other emerging artists to date. A single painting often receives due attention whilst revisiting and resampling works from the past and present. He has been known to near complete a painting before scraping it back to a single mark and starting again. His works are a journey without a definable end-point – an emotional dialogue if you will, between the self, the medium and the tool, to create new forms in a potentially infinite conceptual and physical process”. This is an excellent show (sw)
Monday Club is curated by Dr. Nina Pearlman, Gallery 46 is found at 46 Ashfield Street, London E1. The exhibition continues until July 18th, 12–6pm
Organ coverage of the previous show at Gallery 46 – ORGAN THING: Paul Renner and Paul Sakoilsky – This is The Gate of Heaven at Gallery 46, Whitechapel, East London, now that was an opening
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