Paper Matters

11 May – 2 June 2017

Art First in residence at Eagle Gallery
159 Farringdon Road, Clerkenwell, London EC1R 3AL

Exhibiting Artists
Christopher Cook / Simon Lewty / Bridget Macdonald / Will Maclean / Jack Milroy / Simon Morley

Paper Matters installation image Paper Matters installation image Paper Matters installation image Paper Matters installation image Simon Morley, Age of Extremes, 2010, acrylic on book pages, 116 x 105 cm Simon Morley, Cézanne (1948), 2012, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 cm Simon Morley, Piero della Francesca (1960), 2012, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 cm Jack Milroy, Pieces of Eight (by Six), 2016, cut book page construction, 130 x 105 x 15 cm Christopher Cook, Transit Query, 2013, graphite on paper, 50 x 36 cm Christopher Cook, Reaper with Bowl of Ink, 2016, graphite on paper, 71 x 100 cm Simon Lewty, Cantique des Cantiques, 2016, acrylic on tissue, 35.8 x 47 cm Simon Lewty, Vigilant in Light and Air, 1989, acrylic and mixed media on tissue, 92.8 x 106.7 cm Bridget Macdonald, Octavius, 2017, charcoal on paper, 56 x 76 cm Bridget Macdonald, The Prague Hare, 2015, charcoal/graphite on paper, 81 x 122 cm Will Maclean (with John Burnside), Stormbreeder, from A Catechism of the Laws of Storms, 2014, screenprint, edition of 40, 25 x 55 cm

The primacy of drawing is back, photography has won its position as a fine art, museum departments and specific drawing centres are now established worldwide. The artists presented here all use paper as a central part of their practice.

Simon Lewty has worked exclusively with paper all his life, exploring its multiple surface and palimpsest potential to create both archaic and post-modern calligraphic imagery.

Christopher Cook’s ‘graphites’ are a mysterious mixture of graphite and oil, deployed in evocative abstractions with strong landscape or theatrical references.

Bridget Macdonald exhibited her large, breathtaking charcoal drawings before she considered showing her paintings, and paper remains the dominant element of her work, represented in many English museum collections.

Literature is a significant source for her, as it is for Simon Morley, a strict modernist known for his paintings of book covers and his colour-blocks painted over the texts of penguin book pages or poems, allowing them and titles to evoke the content.

Jack Milroy uses books themselves, releasing their illustrated contents with a scalpel, to move weightlessly through the pages.

For his collaboration with the poet John Burnside, Will Maclean expanded the image-to-poem arrangement of the book, A Catechism of the Laws of Storms, into an edition of striking prints, included in the exhibition.