Franklin Parrasch Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by New York- based artist Chris Churchill. Four large-scale paintings and 15 drawings focus on landscapes that reference aspects of Romantic painting – a tradition from which the artist freely borrows.
These densely composed images reveal a fascination with subterranean phenomena, volcanology, and unpredictable earthly forces. The artist’s approach to these phenomena, however, is pointedly non-scientific. Using discarded photographic imagery (including old travel magazines and catalogues of 19th century photography) as source material, Churchill alludes to wilderness landscapes of the past – from the ideal to the cliché. His use of color as line deliberately avoids any referential application of color theory. Random chromatic order in these images focuses the viewer’s attention upon the interior and composite structure of a vista. A mountain or a lake is painted in a chromatically random manner, though the structural organization of such a space depicts an imagined rendition of its interior.
Shapes within these landscapes implode with abundant overlapping lines. Clearly outlined forms often give way to looser brushwork that suggests rather than defines subjects. Churchill’s system of organization employs a non-palette that altogether eliminates a referential scale of hue or values, thus making the pictures appear spatially inverted.
Churchill describes his landscapes as “studies of form” and reveals “Looking at a glove one can either pull it off and maintain its shape or turn the glove inside out and create another space entirely. I look at a mountain as an object in this same way.”
For images, biography and further information on this exhibition please contact the gallery at (212) 246-5360, or log onto the gallery’s website at www.franklinparrasch.com.