Between 2014 and 2017 Hedley Roberts produced a series of ‘non-portraits’ of lovers, friends, family, acquaintances and strangers. Hedley Roberts begins by working from photographic collages using source materials from social media sites or images sent to him by friends. Sometimes he begins with a photographic image of someone that he wishes to portray, more usually he begins with a collaged image or photograph of someone who looks similar to his subject. Occasionally he just begins.
The paintings start figuratively with recognisable features and representational composition, but as they progress, elements are obliterated, layered over, removed or simplified. Works can be realised in a single sitting, across weeks or even returned to over years. Throughout, Roberts ‘imagines’ his relationship with the person portrayed, creating an internalised dialogue between the person, how he sees the person and his relationship to the process of painting. In this activity, Roberts aims to embody the dialogue between the artist and subject, to ‘make flesh’ of the interior of both, and render that which is invisible – visible. The image of the subject is transformed and ‘becomes’ a ‘non-portrait’ of the person.
The finished works become not only a portrait of the sitter but also function as “other” portraits of the time and landscape in which they were made. Roberts states: “The other is my internet friend, my acquaintance, colleague, family, stranger, lover. The other is the same as me but different. They are black, white, yellow, brown, atheist, agnostic, Christian, Muslim, Arab, Israeli, Palestinian, Syrian, Kurdish, American, European, immigrant, national, ex-pat, straight, hetronormative, genderqueer, neurotypical, different, alien.”
|Duration||09 March 2017 - 29 April 2017|
|Times||Tues- Fri 11-6, Saturday 12-5 or by appointment|
|Venue||New Art Projects|
|Address||6D Sheep Lane, London, E8 4QS|
|Contact||020 7249 4032 / firstname.lastname@example.org / www.newartprojects.com|