Extreme Painting

June 5, 2010 - August 15, 2010

Exposition

Galerie Trois Points is very pleased to welcome the Peinture extrême|Extreme Painting exhibition that features works from Natalie Reis, James Olley, Clint Griffin, Cécile Ronc and Nicolas Fleming. The Peinture extrême|Extreme Painting festival takes place all summer long in more than fifteen galleries in Montreal, each one showing its very own interpretation of the theme.

Natalie Reis holds a master from Waterloo University and an undergraduate degree from Concordia University. Her fist solo show has been presented in 2009 at Galerie Trois Points, but she has shown her work in numerous collective shows, at Usine C, Division Gallery, and at international fairs such as Red Dot in Miami. For this exhibition, Reis shows a very large scale piece in which the dichotomy is hard to ignore, as delicacy comes to terms with bestiality in fascintating lines.

James Olley is a young Toronto based artist who plays with the physicality of the medium of paint, calling attention to the surface's flatness and comibining it with representational image making. The images in his work slowly reveal itself to the viewer as the surface of the paintings transforms from abstract passages into rendered passages. Olley's work has been shown with Angell Gallery in Toronto, as well in Vancouver, Chicago and Portland (OR). He has received the 2009 Emerging Artist Grant from the Ontario Arts Concil.

During the last past years, Clint Griffin has been working with left out mediums, objects he finds in garage sales or garbage that he recycles and gives a whole new dimension. He especially likes working with old paintings that are patchworked on a new canvas and on top of which he paints or draws. Those unusual collages made with partly cut photographs or other found material articulate many stages of reality, creating an unexpected, unfamiliar scene. Clint Griffin graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design and his work has been shown in many solo shows at Galerie Trois Points, but also extensively in Toronto and in the US.

Cécile Ronc's paintings are what she calls "the strenght of softeness". Usually, we associate strong paintings with heavy colors, but Ronc is trying to reach strenght in the complete opposite. Her sublte drippings and tones seem to defy large Olley's impastos. Ronc graduated from École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, but currently lives and works in Montreal where her works has been shown, as well as Toronto, Paris and Madrid, where she was doing a residency in 2009.

Nicolas Fleming holds a master in fine arts from Université du Québec à Montréal as well as a bachelor degree from Concordia University. His work has been shown widely in Quebec and has been featured in a solo show at Galerie de l'UQÀM. Feming constantly plays with hybridity, using paint in a sculptural manner that fits perfectly with the Extreme Painting theme. He puts paint patches on the canvas surface, creating a paint collage where the colors are played to their extremes while an other work features painting rolls on the surface playing with the medium litterality.

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Extreme Painting is an open-ended, wide-ranging forum on the state of painting in Canada, showcasing the skill and originality of painting-based practice across the country. Curiosity and invention and not cynicism or shock tactics underpins the “extremity” of the title; the artists grouped together in Extreme Painting are heterogeneous to the utmost extent, except in that they all pledge their faith to the medium itself, believing it to be an infinitely renewable resource. The radicalism of minimal-inspired work, presenting variations of formal endgame may seem incompatible with the aggressiveness of expressive figuration: but they can be thought of as opposite sides of the same coin. In terms of the lifeblood of painting both are necessary, along with all else that stands its ground and proves its point. The motivation for the exhibition involves a belief that cutting-edge culture, far from writing painting’s obituary, guarantees it a permanent place in the visual arts. Rather than continuing the logic of late-modern formalism, with conceptual art replacing painting as though art history were purely linear after all, the thesis of Extreme Painting proposes that to be consistent we must indeed embrace all forms of art, and accept that we must judge any artwork first by the standards it imposes on itself. Both a destination and a vehicle of sorts for getting there, Extreme Painting is intended to liberate all but harm none, and by doing so to celebrate the vibrant diversity of Canada’s many brilliant painters.
Ben Klein

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