Tom Palin: elegies in grey

Palin, Tom ORCID logoORCID: (2018) Tom Palin: elegies in grey. [Show/Exhibition]


Elegies in Grey attests to an exploration of concerns pertinent to Palin’s recent practice, including the relationship between the object-aspect and picture-aspect of painting. This series of works was developed over eight years. Research process: The process of reconfiguring paintings – as units whose meaning is to be determined – permitted Palin to test formal and narrative solutions in respect of issues of display. The exhibition operated across two rooms. Palin separated the framed works from the unframed, with the latter, much larger group of paintings, displayed on an inverse rotunda wall. In adopting the Salon-style hang for the smaller paintings, he was able to present something of considerable scale, and yet retain an intimacy of connection between the works themselves, and between the spectator and the works. Research insights: Central to Palin’s practice is the notion of a duality between paint and picture, meaning the illusionistic and material aspects of painted objects. The nature of the display pointed to a clearer delineation of the role of the near and far in painting. This oscillation invites the spectator to remain attentive to material and narrative considerations, in so far as one’s experience of the near and far can be mapped onto the here and there. To connect, disconnect, pull apart and draw close is not, then, merely the curator’s privilege. Dissemination: Rotunda, Leeds Arts University, 9th March – 17th May 2018. Palin: Small Works (Gallery on the Green, Settle, 14th May – 8th July 2017). Small World (PS Mirabel , Manchester, 7th – 13th August 2017). Air Open (Air Gallery, Altrincham, 10 – 30th September 2017). Fully Awake, House for an Art Lover, Glasgow, 4th November – 18th November 2017). The exhibition was accompanied by a critical essay by Dr Michael Belshaw.

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