Art & Design
Posted by Sean Irving
30. May, 2011
Tender portraits of comic book heroines caught in repose compete for space with the violent immediacy of a pierced archery target – an onomatopoeic ‘Thwack!’ rippling from its surface – and the ringing of a telephone implicitly signals bad news. This is the hyper-stylised world of Chris Booth, the Brisbane born artist who has spent eighteen months preparing his latest body of work Super-Pop Mk 3 for exhibition in Armadale’s Metro Gallery.
His work engages deeply with façade and surface, Booth lovingly renders effigies of popular culture in soft pastels that are drawn from the imagery of his childhood. Invoking Sunday comics and illustrations from children’s books, the works are imbued with both a sense of nostalgia and a realisation they embody a longing for a time that exists largely as a fictional construction.
Booth’s production technique serves to highlight this duplicity – each piece is created as a three dimensional assemblage. The canvas surface is literally built piece by piece, until an image is raised from the surface. This technique is incredibly striking in person, as an audience moves around the gallery space they are afforded an insight into the artistic process, something most artists traditionally shy away from.
The influences are clear: a lineage of pop that stretches from 1950’s New York to the neon aesthetic of the contemporary Japanese ‘Superflat’ movement spearheaded by Takashi Murakami. However, Booth’s engagement with this material brings a new dimension to the table. Super-Pop Mk 3 is an exhibition that is simultaneously a critique and a celebration of the modern world, as surfaces shift and change the viewer is left to examine the internal mechanisms of these beautiful exteriors.
Super-Pop Mk 3 launches Wed 25 May 6.30pm – 8.30pm and runs until June 12
Metro Gallery, 1214 High St, Armadale
For more information visit www.metrogallery.com.au
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