‘IN CHORUS’ – HUGH BYRNE, 29 JAN – 02 MAR 2020
“Progress through exploration and discovery continues to be important in my work. Revisiting and recycling earlier, sometimes abandoned, painterly experiments has been central to the development of the works collected in this exhibition. They are the products of a constant process of creation, destruction, appropriation and rediscovery which ultimately trouble, and even collapse, the divisions between ‘painting’ and ‘object’.
I realised how important the studio space as an influence on my work is. Left over material which had accumulated (including old frames, loosened canvas paintings and other studio by-products) presented not only a vantage point from which to start anew, but also materials that could be added to works in progress, offering solutions to formal problems and creating interesting textures and forms. In my earlier work, I relied heavily on tape to bring together different areas of interest to deliberately achieve harmony/disharmony. For In Chorus, however, the process of adding canvas to canvas demanded an act of suturing, either by means of glue or needlework. Working in such a highly tactile mode is conceptually interesting to me, since it implies that the canvas is not merely a means to an end, but a malleable object in its own right. This approach results in the frayed edges, visible sewing thread and other imperfections which emphasise the materiality of the work, with its rich assemblage of oils, acrylics, collage, glue, sand, marble dust and all manner of bric-a-brac found in the studio.”
– Hugh Byrne, 2020