Glenn Brown: Come To Dust

For Glenn Brown, one of Britain’s most renowned contemporary artists, the past and present are treasuries of raw material, offering countless images, titles, and techniques to be combined, appropriated, and deconstructed. Mining an extensive knowledge of art history, as well as of literature, music, and popular culture, Brown creates complex and sensuous works of art that are resolute of our time.

The title of the exhibition, taken from a song in Shakespeare’s play Cymbeline, evokes the ineluctability of death. The exhibition, comprising oil paintings, drawings in period frames, grisaille panel works, etchings, and sculptures attest to the ever-intensifying dexterity with which Brown employs paint, content, and form. It teems with contrasts and contradictions, collapsing time, and allowing different, often opposing, references to exist simultaneously. Sources include Rembrandt, Delacroix, Greuze, and Raphael, as well as Abraham Bloemaert, Francesco Mancini, Gaetano Gandolfi, Elisabeth Le Brun, and Bernardo Cavallino.

In Brown’s oil paintings, hybrid figures painted in intricate swirls reveal the sumptuous potential of oil paint. While these paintings give the illusion of corporeal volume and fullness, closer scrutiny reveals the surfaces to be smooth and flat. Painted flesh deliquesces, rots, and glows with a vital force. Rather than using paint to depict skin with observational exactitude, Brown shows the medium itself to be full of visceral life; translucent brushstrokes reveal the flesh, muscle, and sinew beneath the surface.

Duration 24 January 2018 - 17 March 2018
Times Tues-Sat 10am-6pm
Cost Free
Venue Gagosian Gallery (Grosvenor Hill)
Address 20 Grosvenor Hill, London, W1K 3QD
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