text for my latest show starting 1st October
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An exhibition of Drawings in Colour and Sculpture by Carol Peace
This new body of work has not only been created through clay but also through oil paint, always with an undercurrent of drawing. The oil paint is like the clay, it is slippery, moveable, the image is there and then it’s gone. It’s easy to pile on, scrape off, smudge, and draw in to. I seem to be sculpting like a painter and making drawings in colour.
For my degree thesis I looked at Rodin’s work and the theory of representing movement. I realise now, some 20 years later, that I had asked the wrong question, it’s not about representing or ‘capturing’ movement, it’s about trying to respond to it in an intuitive way. A new piece called Attempting Sirsasana is like a drawing of movement, rough lines and plains form quickly, areas are left blurred, only the essence is there.
The new pieces Him, Her and Them are raw because life is raw. Broken, cracked in places, deep scars run over the work but the deep ruts and scars reveal the form; reveal the life, the frailties and the power. I try to make the marks strong like using charcoal; there are areas of focus and areas that fade.
In the drawings in colour, the subject matter changes from the life room to the still life but in changing the objects I see more clearly my interests. When I draw cherries they are in love, in a painting of tomatoes their shadows nearly touch. Peaches rest their soft flesh on one another for support, which gives over time. Bright happy lemons jostle with blue shadows. A lone tomato is still attached to its family tree, they are not present and yet always there. In something ordinary there is often sadness and a beauty.
Relationships and our interaction with other people dominate us and in turn form the basis for much of my recent work. The extra ordinariness and magnitude of the simplicity of the touch of a partner, the closeness of love, it’s basic.
The work is about everyday life, in its minutia, the sheer fantasticness of it all. It’s about the flash of a look, a small gesture, the pressure of a hand in yours, of skin resting on skin. It’s about the rawness and confusion of being alive, the beauty and the complications of it, the freedom, exhilaration and the insecurities. It’s about death and about life, the fear and the joy.
This is not to say that all this is apparent in a piece of bronze or a painting of two peaches but it is what I am aiming for and it makes me go to the studio.