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The Thames Mudlarks at CTRL Gallery
Andrea Medjesi-Jones - Exodus (left side detail), 2007, Acrylic, ink and spray paint on vinyl mounted on aluminum, 47 1/4 x 17 3/4 in.

HOUSTON, TX.- CTRL Gallery presents The Thames Mudlarks - a group show of London artists. The Thames thick, foul-smelling mud is low in oxygen. As a result, it prevents organic decay and helps preserve objects. And there is an almost limitless supply of finds. In medieval times, the timber embankments, or revetments, you see lining the Thames needed to be replaced every 25 years. Each time, they would be back-filled with rubbish of the day, old household goods and toys among it. Add to that a tidal river that swept items in and out, and the sheer quantity of shipping (shedding rubbish), and you have a rich store yet to be uncovered. And with it, the modern tidal drop on the Thames approaching 25 ft., there's every opportunity for the Mudlarks to get in about it. One thing's for sure - the Mysterious Mudlarks have plenty to uncover still...

Shane Bradford's multi-component, wall-based works are a perfect hybrid mix of painting and sculpture. By repeatedly dipping his carefully selected objects into gloss paint, layer after layer builds up, forming precise geometric patterns and hardened drips. Bradford was recently awarded the prestigious 2007 Celeste Prize. He graduated in 1995 from Brighton University.

Adam Humphries' works are ingenious and impeccably crafted explorations of scale in nature. Mudlarks will feature two new painted polystyrene sculptures as well as two large-scale unique digital prints. Humphries was included in ArtReview's 2004 list of London's top 25 new artists. He graduated from The Royal Acedemy of Art in 2004.

Peter Lamb's multifarious process incorporates sculpture, photography, painting and printmaking, resulting in enigmatic, emotionally charged works of art. Lamb has exhibited in and curated many exhibitions in London and abroad. He graduated 1996 from Camberwell School of Art and Design.

Alastair MacKinven's new paintings deal with visual illusion in an intentionally awkward fashion. In one, the Penrose Stairs, made famous by MC Escher's lithograph Ascending and Descending, are voluptuously rendered in stark contrast to Escher's scientific exactitude. MacKinven received his MFA from Goldsmith's college in 1996.

Andrea Medjesi-Jones' phantasmagorical works take cues from animation and surrealism while seemingly incorporating the grand themes of History Painting. Medjesi-Jones was included in the 2006 Liverpool Biennial and in ArtReview's 2004 list of London's top 25 new artists. She graduated from Goldsmith's College of Art in 2004.

Jost Muenster's paintings are careful experiments in color and surface that explore the outer-reaches of representation. His smart, contemporary meditations on formalism add an elegant dimension to the Mudlarks. Muenster graduated from Goldsmith's College of Art in 2003.

Piers Secunda's sculpture assemblages are made entirely from heavy-duty industrial paints. His unique process involves pouring and casting paint then creating components, which are assembled into wall-based sculptures. Secunda graduated from Chelsea college of Art in 1998.

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January 12, 2008

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