This September Green On Red Gallery will open an exhibition of new prints by John Graham. Reconfigure is the artist¹s fifth solo show with the Gallery. 2003 has been an active one for Graham who has exhibited in solo shows in the Hitsuji Gallery, Niigata and Amaneya Gallery, Fukuoka, Japan and in Fenderesky Gallery, Belfast. He has had two two-person exhibitions; one with Richard Gorman at the Yanagisawa Gallery, Tokyo and the other with the Japanese calligrapher Teisi Maesaki at Acros Gallery in Fukuoka. Graham has also collaborated with Dominic Stevens Architects on a building project which received Special Mention in the AAI Awards 2003.
For this show, the artist has made carborundum prints and etchings. The new work embodies and extends familiar themes the centrality of drawing, and a system of mark-making, allied to ideas of repetition and chance in design.
My work is essentially drawing. The act of drawing and the print processes through which it occurs inform each other in various ways. Printmaking is laborious. I¹m interested in the contradiction between a certain felicity and lightness that I am trying to achieve and the often painstaking and technically complex methods of achieving it.
The etchings are mostly diptychs. Separate plates are printed together to form couples. These Œcouples¹ are not envisaged beforehand but only come about after many individual elements are made. "The drawing is fairly schematic accumulations of lines, loops and scribbles, the repetition of familiar motifs. Composition comes mainly through the alignment of separate elements to form relationships."
The larger carborundum prints are simpler in form. The artist likens them to animation. "Drawings change. The print is an arrested moment in an ongoing activity, like a still from an animation sequence. It is a kind of confirmation of the drawing¹s state at a particular time the Œproof¹ of its existence." The lightness of these works is in their mood as much as in their visual clarity, combining qualities of austere elegance and playful animation.