Damien Flood’s inaugural exhibition, Counter Earth, at Green On Red Gallery opens Thursday, January 28, 2010. The exhibition consists of all new paintings on different supports, mostly modest in scale. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue.
Flood has shown himself to be a painter of exceptional originality and flare. His work breeds uncertainty, more questions than answers. His paintings could be described as visual contradictions and incomplete. We are not sure what time period we are in, what place we are facing or even what planet we are on, such are his inventions of unpeopled mountains and valleys, microworlds and firmaments. Light levels and palette are crepuscular to nocturnal. His scenes are without incident and often don’t add up, either because he paints a world more on an immeasurable microscopic scale or, simply, his settings are carefully incomplete. The tactic of incompleteness is one that fantastically and teasingly draws in the viewer.
There is an engagement with the process and language of painting that is pure indulgence and pure pleasure to behold. Surfaces are varnished, wet and/or dry, encrusted or washed, oil or half-oil ground belying an intense exploration of the possibilities of paint, both tried and tested and pioneering.
Another artist whose work raised similar doubts and uneasiness in the eye and mind of the viewer is Wilhelm Sasnal. Of his work it is written :
“ his painting…insists on a subjective approach that is under no obligation to divulge its procedures. Thus it situates itself, as art, within the contradiction between the sustained allusion to moments of reality and the simultaneous sundering of a direct connection to it. Its self-referentiality, which sometimes achieves hermetic proportions, is nonetheless able to communicate by substituting a deep intensity and visual conviction for the declaration of its content. “
(Wilhelm Sasnal, Night Day Night, 2003)
Flood paints in this way, because he can. There is an openness and play with his subjects in paintings like Optical Band Width, Drip or Still Coast that reveals an artist and an imagination constantly looking, remarking, inventing and returning. Strange as it may seem as a reference, but in the work of Wolfgang Tillman’s something of the same repetition of concerns occurs but with an insistence always on the primacy of the image and the independence of the work as a thing. In discussing Tillman’s Abstractions Layne Relyea writes : “ the very fact that they get talked about as ‘ abstractions ‘ highlights how all of Tillman’s pictures carefully instantiate and manipulate genre ( still life, portrait, landscape and so forth ), how they are pictures first before they are pictures of some thing. “ Flood also combines photography in this exhibition with his very accomplished painting.
Damien recently graduated from the MA in Fine Art in NCAD. He immediately was selected to exhibit in the John Moores contemporary painting exhibition in Liverpool followed by the Saatchi Space in London during Frieze ’08. He has been in numerous other group exhibitions including Anopseudonymous in Five Hundred Dollars Gallery, Vyner St., London, the Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray and previous group exhibitions in The Green On Red Gallery, Dublin.
Damien Flood will be in conversation with Patrick Murphy (Director of RHA) in Green On Red Gallery on Wednesday, 17 February 2010, from 7 - 8pm. All are welcome.
For further information please contact Jerome or Mary at 00353 1 6713414 or firstname.lastname@example.org