Thin Places brings together four contemporary multidisciplinary artists to display a state of being, creating a narrative of mythology associated with time and place.
Simon Bayliss b. 1984, Wolverhampton
For “Thin Places” Bayliss has returned to work plein air exhibiting a series of watercolour studies.
Simon Bayliss is an artist and music producer based at Porthmeor Studios in St Ives, Cornwall, UK. Trained as a painter and more recently as a potter, he works mainly in slipware ceramics, dance music and video, with occasional forays into poetry and performance. Born in 1984, Wolverhampton, he was raised in Andros, Bahamas, then East Devon, UK and has been living in Cornwall most of his adult life.
Francisco Mendes Moreira b. 1979, Portugal
For “Thin Places” Moreira is providing a series of assemblages blurring the lines between dimensions.
The chromatic drawings and paintings of Portuguese artist Francisco Mendes Moreira often depict abstract faces and figures as he explores universal themes relating to the human experience. Typically engaging with repurposed surfaces ranging from old scraps of fabric and cardboard to blocks of wood, Moreira uses oil paint or oil pastel to create his complex portraits. Employing different methods including collage and charcoal, Moreira’s works are a unique blending of figuration and abstraction. The artist is also recognized for his renderings of sprawling landscapes featuring trees and mountains; these elements are usually depicted in unnatural hues and highlight the otherworldly feeling the work evokes. Work from Moreira’s extensive oeuvre has been exhibited throughout Europe and North America.
Mafia Tabak b. 1990, Austria
For “Thin Places” Tabak has visited Cornwall to explore the area of West Penwith to make work as an immediate response to his surroundings.
By painting graffiti since 2006, MAFIA TABAK created his own visual language which formed his artistic identity. Although his roots came from that he separates nowadays graffiti totally from any kind of art stuff. All his studio work (canvases, installations, drawings, prints) are another way of expressing himself, which is of course all influenced by his graffiti background.
His work reflects his ironic driven humour and the fact that he does not want to take painting too seriously. The use of his materials, motives, references and even how MAFIA TABAK shapes forms and chooses colours are reliant on cliches but reinterpreted in new contexts. Although all the forms, figurative or abstract, portrayed expressively and vividly, Tabak organizes them into intelligible structures. He paints the figures as less fierce than other artists, but they are characterized with the same tenderness and naivety. Tabak works as a well-educated admirer of child drawing, who decided to reject all the possible academic approach towards it. Despite the fact that we can easily recognize that Tabak is inspired by surrealism, we should not presume that he lets the avant-garde masters influence him excessively. His collage-like canvases, short crayon strokes and “badly” coloured colouring pictures show that he purely and simply did not forget the joy of unschooled creation.
When assembling the layers of everyday and/or exceptional things and situations, Tabak always generously leaves room for the viewer’s own layers, encouraging them to participate. The beholder should feel awkward, confused, and surprised at the same time. MAFIA TABAK describes his painting style as “Naive art” or “Primitivism” mixed up with referential motives and Installation elements and brought together as actual or painted collages on paper or canvases. The topics should mirror his sense of humour and give insights of his daily lifestyle as a full time artist.
Spencer Shakespeare b. 1967, London
For “Thin Places” Shakespeare has completed a series of large canvases and shamanic objects.
Born in 1967 in London, Shakespeare discovered his addiction to the natural world in his yearly holidays to Cornwall with his family, which, after 20 years of living on Australia’s Gold Coast he has returned to, residing near Penzance where he says the bird song is at its most beautiful.
Being an obsessive and automatic drawer since the age of seven, Shakespeare completed a degree in Illustration at Bournemouth College of Art and Design (1992-1995). Although his love of drawing never stopped, as he matured both as a person and an artist, he sought to break away from commissioned work, seeking his own artistic independence. Now an internationally successful artist, independence is what he has certainly achieved. He enjoys transcribing places of intersection; the coastline, the edge of forests- places where a transition of boundaries takes place. The garden is significant in his work because of the element of interchange between the domestic boundary and the beginning of wilderness. Although he is inspired by places such as these, he never strives for specifics nor is beholden to the landscape around him, instead drawing and exposing his own imaginary world. His work connotes a kind of mystery, a kind of magic. A world where colours are intense, high contrast, energetic: vibrating with an emotional energy. His abstract canvases show the blurred boundaries of the humming world he sees: a door for you, the viewer, that opens into wonderland.
Tremenheere Gallery is open Tuesday – Saturday, 11am – 4pm. Closed Sundays and Mondays. FREE entry – no need to pre-book visits. The exhibition will be launched with an opening event on Friday 17th June, 6-8pm.