Speak Line, Shape :: Brent Hallard

060908# 'miyu', 8.27" x 11.69" card on Japanese cotton museum board mounted onto expanded PVC

For me, line is being. When I look at a beautiful drawing, my heart beats faster; I am seduced with the reckoning of space by artist and mark. I respond to line, to shape, to color; to order and to structure; the architectronics of space, both obvious and obscure. I believe drawings can be created as an intuitive response to material placed within a certain defined location, at a certain velocity, within a certain moment. In such processes, the resulting drawings are evidenced as the mechanics of time and structure evolve.

Pour faire simple - at ParisCONCRET. The exhibition marks the opening of a new establishment in Paris devoted to abstract and reductive art.

If you are familiar with my work, you know that I also believe drawing to be a form of visual intelligence; a record of thinking and re-thinking through repetitive attention to formal elements. Brent Hallard creates drawings within this dialogue. As he says, "The spin is in the story that the line and shape speak".

Brent grew up in Sydney Australia. He has lived in Germany and the UK, and currently in Tokyo, Japan. He runs a project space near the Jiyugaoka district called Bus-Dori. Brent keeps a studio blog, ConcretePhone, as well as Visual Discrepancies, where he interviews contemporary artists such as Kevin Finklea, Mel Prest, John Tallman, Doug Witmer, Linn Meyers, and
Shinsuke Aso.

Hallard Studio shot of small mock templates that are being turned in physical signs using corrugated plastic, sheet plastic (that resembles shoji), with Japanese acrylic resin for the color line

Brent's work is evidenced in vividly graphic, scaled segments of line and color positioned within varying spacial parameters. His drawings are a sort of metaphysical exploration of concrete space, implicit with tension arrived at via combined oppositional structures such as controlled line and vast expanse; noise and quietude; the grounded and the gravity-defying; the formalistic and the conceptual.

acrylic and pencil on cut and folded paper, 8.5 x 11.7 in., 2008

"...What I’m actually looking for are a set of lines that work well while keeping the interest in a visual flux. The template drawings are usually small. I use painted tape to clarify choices, but also to hunt out other viable ways of bringing the experience out. I work with very simple materials and employ simple rules that eventually get broken. In the end it’s in the monkey business that you get good rhyme, reason, and rhythm".

spare snippet

Visually spare, yet ephemeral, Brent's work embraces a reductive, perhaps Minimalist aesthetic. But with life. Line is an entrance to surface, and beyond, by sheer constructivist physicality. It moves fluidly, shifts into dimensional form, flattens and returns to quiet. Color, both as chroma and substance, clinches the deal: Japanese acrylic resin on plastic paper, colored tape, mounted board, walls, and layers of corrugated plastic. Simplicity, and beauty.

Spa-t_kiss -pink fb

".... Each of us have our special moment with art, and I have mine too. It's a moment defining a frame within a space, a moment that moves clock-wise, or, and then, anti-clockwise. It's a moment above and below the moment. It's a moment that floods and sinks. It's a moment that pours into every empty cabin-space. It's a moment that moves deeper into the moment. This moment eventually breaks into two, and is engulfed by the one, and as an ocean, drives us through".

TRANSformal at Pharmaka, LA, 2009

Yes, your line and shape do speak.

Thanks, Brent.


Beyond the Boundary :: Clytie Alexander

Clytie Alexander NM 67 Blue, Ink on Glassine, 36 x 24, Courtesy of Betty Cunningham Gallery March, 2009

I have been captivated by Clytie Alexander's pristinely ordered painted planes on view in her exhibit, Diaphans, at Betty Cuningham Gallery in Chelsea. The work consists of minimal, elegantly constructed surfaces which embrace a sensitive and austere perception of light, color and space. In the foyer, framed ink drawings on translucent Glassine paper, hover beneath plexi panels and layers of the reflective, shimmery paper.

Clytie Alexander Diaphan 41 White/White, acrylic aluminum, 48 x 34, 2009 courtesy of Betty Cuningham Gallery

In the main gallery, her Diaphans hang by metal bars just away from the wall support. These are process oriented renderings constructed of paper-thin sheet metal, randomly punched through with holes, and painted on each side with tonal variations of acrylic paint.

Clytie Alexander Diaphans 48 x 34 inches, acrylic aluminum, 2006 Installation view courtesy Greenfield Sacks Gallery

The installation of the panels allows light to travel through and around the uniformly sized surfaces. With gentle fluctuations of color, light source and air flow, the essence of the work is continually and subtly in flux.

Clytie Alexander Diaphan 18 Blue/ Ultramarine 34 x 35 inches, 2007 Courtesy of Betty Cuningham Gallery

The effect is powerful: a muting of edge and therefore a questioning of the architecture of defined space, controlled by the presence or absent of light. Go see it.

Clytie Alexander, Diaphans

Betty Cuningham Gallery
541 West 25th Street
February 5 - March 14, 2009