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THE ARCHITECTURE OF COLOUR

The Architecture of Colour includes the work of Imi Knoebel, Winston Roeth, Tomislav Nikolic Gunter Umberg, Jude Rae, Leigh Martin, Elisabeth Vary and Fred Sandback.

In each of the artists practice colour has implications beyond the purely chromatic. The manner in which Knoebel and Umberg’s approach colour could not be more different. Where Knoebel’s colour has major structural implications – the architecture of the planes that comprise his compositions are

almost entirely a function of the positioning and juxtapositions of divergent colour, Umberg’s slow accretion of pigment, its resulting depth and atmosphere induce a more metaphysical even existential relationship to form/body and colour.

There is a sense with the most angular and faceted objects Vary makes that what is available to us on the near side of the wall is perhaps just the tip of a geometry that extends well through the other side – a series of chromatic icebergs cut loose from the float. Vary’s paintings, like Umberg’s have volume and mass but Vary’s appears a more casual and less predetermined proposition. The paint is applied with certain vigour and retains a sense of viscosity in its spill and run that asserts its fundamental nature as painted object. This concern with colours’ thickness and wilfulness lead us to the paintings of Tomislav Nikolic and Leigh Martin.

For both, colour, its viscosity and volume, its behaviour on the face, at the edge and indeed over the

side of the painting has implications for the paintings relationship to the wall. Nikolic attends to every plane – front, back and side – no aspects is immune to the welcome infection of colour. Martin’s goopy materiality won’t remain within the borders of the picture plane and its resulting “misbehaviour” means that the painting sits out from the wall as the unruly drips determine, in a centipede like fashion, the ultimate depth of the work.

Jude Rae’s Still Life paintings make it clearer the more we see, that the subject of the paintings, has little to do with the content. The contingency of vision that fascinates Rae is a phenomenon where colour as much as edge; light as much as form dictates the atmosphere of her paintings.

The uncertainty of vision that lends Rae’s line a vibrato is apparent in the gentle quiver that accompanies the sculpture of Fred Sandback. Sandback’s yarn sculptures which describe threshold and void, mass and absence are almost subconsciously dependent on colour. It may not be the first aspect that one feels with Sandback but his selection of colour and its presence and allusiveness are critical aspects in each sculptures form. Some sculptures combine colour combinations even within the span of one element. The form asserts itself or diminishes in direct capacity to the eyes ability to read the architecture of colour.

– Andrew Jensen