Installation view, Joe Bradley, The Missus & Me, Kastro, Antiparos, 2014
Eva Presenhuber is delighted to present her off-space Kastro. Once a year, a show by an internationally renowned artist will be on display over the summer in Kastro, on the island of Antiparos.
For the first exhibition, Joe Bradley will present a new body of work based on the technique of unique silkscreens. Drawing upon motifs imagined by the artist, these silkscreens create an abstraction outside of known shapes. These works relate to his practice as a draughtsman, not thought of as sketches but rather as a more free mode of expression where singular motifs are given space without having to relate to one another. Drawing from archetypal forms, the artist constructed different series of works, amongst them the Schmagoo Paintings, for which he used a grease pencil and elaborated on very simple motifs such as a stick figure, logos, or a fish. Bradley also explored the idea of a series referred to as modular paintings, constructed from different shaped monochrome canvases, creating figure-like silhouettes, a vision that was furthered in his last exhibition “The SS Potlicker and Friends“. For another series, the artist, as if going against these clean and intelligible shapes and motifs, displayed a series of abstract paintings, combining large canvases, sewn together, painted on all sides, with multifarious layers of paint, materials, and meaning. They recall not only a tradition of American Abstract Expressionist painters such as Jackson Pollock or Willem de Kooning but draw to deeper roots of art history by invoking cave paintings and primitive art. These intricate paintings, which at first glance seem totally abstract, reveal that the artist never abandons the figure, which is always in some way present in the painting. Furthermore, all his works have a comprehensive title, as if he wanted to stir the viewer in a certain direction, perhaps one that refers more to figuration and its origins, than the most straightforward aperçu of abstraction.
Bradley’s work has never ceased to evolve since the beginning of his career, always pushing the boundaries of a new abstraction within his pictorial practice.
Joe Bradley’s work is currently on display in a comprehensive solo exhibition at the Consortium Dijon running until September 28, 2014.