Art & Design
Posted by Sean Irving
09. Aug, 2011
Hidden in an upstairs loft off an inner city lane is Warburton Lane Exhibits, a small gallery space that houses Joseph Flynn’s latest solo exhibition, Animal Spirit. This is Flynn’s third solo show in as many years and his work has changed dramatically since his artistic debut. His pieces have wandered from tightly constructed illustrative pieces in pencil and fine-liner to wild expressive abstracts with his latest series being his most experimental.
The figurative elements of his work have been abandoned in favour of swathes of mute grey and black house paint that is manipulated on flat aluminium surfaces.
Animal Spirit is an exploration of a digital culture, the abstract images that Flynn paints are drawn from the stock image editing effects of a handheld video game console. Images are manipulated and mirrored, appearing as almost perfect fractals. Flynn’s painterly hand, however, robs the patterns of their symmetry, resulting in an unsettling imperfection that engages the eye while the addition of neon spray paint that delineates the works conjures images of construction and industry.
Flynn’s larger pieces are presented on backdrops of cow-hide and these are the artist’s most effective works. The implication of dead organic matter juxtaposed with the dull shine of aluminium is both disturbing and arresting. The natural patchwork of a cow’s markings echo Flynn’s brush strokes, creating a dichotomy that reverberates through the works. These pieces are charged with a tension created by the frenetic application of paint and the implicit strength of the metal it rests on.
Flynn is a young artist. For a twenty-two-year-old he’s embarked on quite an ambitious project. The show resonates with the resolve of an artist determined to make his mark and Animal Spirit demonstrates just how serious he is.
Animal Spirit is showing until the 21st of August
Warburton Lane Exhibits
Lvl 2/12 Warburton Lane, Melbourne
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