Monday, June 7, 2010

Opening at OMR...













Colonia Roma, once home to the Beat Generation hanging out, now home to a fine selection of cutting edge contemporary art galleries in colonial buildings, all adds up to a beautiful barrio for strolling, chilling, dining and taking in some fine exhibitions. On Saturday, OMR Gallery opened their new exhibition "The winner often wept and was kissed by the loser" by Vancouver-born international artist Graham Gillmore.















Gillmore's large trademark canvasses consist of a series of "text messages" embedded in layers of design making the viewer curious to decipher both the meaning and often ironic wordplay. "Misguided by Invoices" above is a mischievous play on "Guided by Voices" - and as an astute friend of mine once remarked "when people hear voices in their head, why don't they ever say anything nice?"... The words and phrases are taken from lyrics, everyday phrases, the radio, and can be very personal in nature...



















The canvas below is a transcript of a psychological evaluation of Gillmore himself, assessing his suitability to be a fit parent to take custody of his son, and the closed off symbols are both reminiscent of a computer keyboard plus the cold closed-offness of such institutional language...




















One of the most fascinating aspects of Gillmore's work is that all his pieces use vintage ledger paper as the canvas, something which started in his childhood when his accountant father gave him scrap ledger paper to draw upon. Now he finds it a comfortable starting point rather than the terrifying prospect of a totally blank canvas. Today he tracks down his ledger paper in flea markets, or people are kind enough to send him some. This choice of canvas is much more obvious in the recent spirograph paintings which set up a nice echo between the curlicues of the old-fashioned penmanship on the ledgers and the swirls of the brushstrokes....















The next close-up shot of a section of one of the larger paintings really highlights in more detail the interesting complexity of this relationship between old and new text...















What a treat it was on Saturday to meet the artist himself at the opening, and hear him speak so articulately and accessibly about his work and ideas. He was very relaxed and personable, happy to chat about his art, plus we also ended up swapping top tips about New York and Mexico City - Smalls for Zincos....



















The OMR Galeria itself is a beautiful space and the works are wonderfully and thoughtfully displayed to their best...




















Near the end of the exhibition I found this painting and wish I had had the chance to ask about its origin and inspiration - I am sure there is an interesting story behind it!!

















Gillmore has exhibited at MOMA, NY and Tate Modern London, plus his work is included in important permanent exhibitions all over the world. This show is on at OMR Gallery (Plaza Rio de Janeiro 54, Roma) until July 24th - Don't miss it!! For more happenings around the world, check out My World Tuesday by clicking here.

9 comments:

Sylvia K said...

Fascinating and really intriguing art work! Thanks for taking us along for the opening. Great shots as always, Catherine! Hope you have a great week!

Sylvia

Photo Cache said...

Love to go to places like that - so much humor too.

www.ewok1993.wordpress.com

Indrani said...

Great display of art pieces, thanks for sharing them. The wordings of the last one is touching. What a confession!

J Bar said...

Interesting works.

Luna Miranda said...

very interesting artworks. i enjoyed figuring out the texts. the last one made me smile.:p

Gwendolyn L said...

Interesting. Great photos. I enjoyed your story. Thanks for sharing.

Owen said...

So, you weren't able to find out how he tricked his mother ?

Fly Girl said...

I believe I've seen his work before at the Tate, very interesting.

Catherine said...

glad you all like the look of this exhibition - thanks very much for all the interesting comments..