AMSTERDAM.- Reflex Gallery
presents London-born artist Barry Reigates first solo show in the BeNeLux this Autumn.
Reigates work is a powerful, eclectic and visually mind-blowing mix of symbolic pop imagery, geometrical design and multi-dimensional painterliness. Often on a large scale, with several components layered in spray paint, oil, pencil and other media, these stunningly arresting works both amuse and disturb, repel and seduce.
Of the 15 new pieces completed for this exhibition, a cartoon wolf figure populates several of the works a talismanic figure that recalls the Three Little Pig fairy-tale and other hazy childhood memories. It is a typical Reigate motif. At times trapped below a nailed, latticed wooden structure, the wolf is imprisoned, disempowered. Atop, are geometric roundels and other shapes, symbols recalled from maths lessons, transformed into free-wheeling elements. These are complex, composite images that insist on multiple interpretations.
The wolf was sourced from an advert; the wood structure is from the Smurfs, a machine that makes things, says Reigate.
His work treads an electric line between figurative and abstract; the introduction of the wolf figure here a deliberate invitation to the viewer to attach meaning, in what he calls the hallucinogenics of art.
Consistent to Reigates art is an emphasis on drawing. The exhibition will showcase some of his extraordinary free-form graphic work in which familiar images and motifs are worked and reworked often incorporating elements of graffiti mark making. My drawings are like a train of subconscious thought, images put down from exterior thoughts/ideas from outside the studio. They come out from a state of boredom. The closest association is the idea of drawing on the covers of academic books, when you are bored at school. Like a form of escape.
Riotously rich, glossy and textured, graphic and painterly, this is the work of an artist who is self-admittedly excited by the idea of excess. Im interested in the idea of when to stop
Culture as excess of survival, airbrushing comic wolves and pigs, to pay the rent.
In tandem with the exhibition, Reflex Editions is publishing the first monograph of Barry Reigates work.
Reigate has exhibited all over the world from Moscow to Verona. He was part of the British Art Now show at London Saatchi Gallery in 2010.