Bartha Contemporary is delighted to announce an exhibition curated by gallery artist Giulia Ricci entitled “Tactile Line”. The installation will showcase recent works by Sasha Holzer, Sam Messenger, David Murphy and Giulia Ricci. Their practice employs an unfamiliar tactile quality as part of their often geometric and highly contextualised pieces. Indeed, these artists share a common interest in intricate hand-made and time-consuming processes.
Considering the recent increasing consumption and dissemination of artworks through screens, Tactile Line is a reflection on the physical presence of the artwork and its materiality. From the process of conception and creation, to the fruition in the gallery; encountering these artworks is a sensory experience that involves more than just seeing an object from a single point of view.
Sam Messenger (b. 1980, UK) works with highly intricate geometric patterns, which combine painstaking hand-drawing with the physical qualities of ink. Cryograph has been created by exposing various pigments and binders to subzero temperatures; the result is a series of images in which the complex patterns of ice growth have been captured through ink on paper before the crystals have eventually melted away.
The carefully carved wooden panels made by Sasha Holzer (b. 1959, UK) also show a profound and meticulous knowledge of the properties of the materials used. Light is reflected at different angles on the shallow relief of the carvings, revealing the multifaceted grains in the wood. Patterns emerge organically, sometimes through a sort of domino effect. These highly geometric works are born out of a very intuitive physical relationship with the material and the carving tools.
Tools are also really important in the work of David Murphy (b. 1983, UK), whose practice includes sculpture, work on paper and painting, touching upon the various manifestations of human activity and its impact on the environment. David Murphy’s paintings are made with a tool which scratches the surface as if it is guiding a path in the landscape, almost like ploughing a field, or perhaps weaving at the loom.
Warp and weft are a fitting reference for the patterns of Giulia Ricci (b. 1976, IT), where the change in orientation of the triangular unit, and the change of direction in the mark-making of the hand-made drawings, create the contrast between figure and ground. In the work of Giulia Ricci there is an haptic quality embedded in the interweaving of the micro and macro patterns which is best appreciated by looking at the work from multiple points of view.