[Fields] - 13 - 30 November 2007, TJ Bateson Studio Gallery

Light Grey Band

[Fields] - 16 January - 2 February 2008, fortyfivedownstairs

[Fields] was exhibited at fortyfivedownstairs as part of the 2008 Midsumma Festival. The work was also exhibited at T J Bateson Studio Gallery at the end of 2007. The work was made of many smaller pieces of paper that were worked on separately and then stitched together and reworked as whole works.

A journey through the landscapes of rural Victoria and the corresponding hues of nature are evidenced in the new body of work from Tim Bateson. But, as one would expect from an artist whose work continues to explore the abstract, these are not renditions of land- and seascapes imbued with a sense of realism.

As with the previous exhibition, Fields (2007), it is, instead, a body of work of quiet, contemplative abstract moments but which, simultaneously, manages to be bold in its confidence in its presentation and exploration of ideas and connections, both to the individual works within the exhibition and themes and motifs explored in earlier work.

Repetition remains a key element to the work and the continued exploration of a ‘family’ of ideas and images. Each individual piece contains a number of panels, each row duplicated, off-set by one. The repeating abstract creates a harmony and rhythm, formalising and ordering the dependent abstract panels. The systematic overlaying pencil veils, sitting as it does on the surface, but which also unifies the work. In contrast to the more fluid under-painting, the pencil marks create detail, creating sharpness and focus.

The use of paint encrusted with silver leaf and metallic pigments of aluminium and bronze create a new surface, a pearlescence, a shimmering reflective quality that captures moments of light, of a flickering gesture or movement.

The exploration of colour and low tonality continue to be synonymous: quiet, muted tones of a contemplative nature, calling for moments of reflection at each drawing, allowing the many layers to unfurl and unfold.

Keith Lawrence