Working in over-sized dimensions…the brushstrokes, a shade of tone, a move of the spatula, they all tell us what is hidden behind what we have seen a thousand times. I approached this series of paintings as I imagined directing a film. Each painting is meant to exist as a portal for the viewer to jump through.
This spring, Lazarides welcomes a new solo show from French-American artist Jerome Lagarrigue. Conflict, collision and contradiction form the foundation of ‘The Tipping Point’, a new series of large scale paintings from the New York-based artist.
Culling from press footage and internet images of riots around the globe, Lagarrigue will present a series of large paintings, each of which acts as a lens into conflict zones without any particular geographical location and devoid of any explicit narrative. This lens, however, is a blurry one; his figures and landscapes exist in a state of near abstraction.
Lagarrigue will bring visitors to Lazarides into landscapes of human collision, focusing on those moments in history when things literally fall apart. Faces, as well as natural elements such as fire, water, smoke and gas, meld together, producing a sensation of anonymity. These collisions could be happening to anyone and everyone, anywhere and everywhere. In this way, they become metaphors for our own internal struggles and contradictions.
Drawing inspiration from paintings such as Paolo Ucello’s The Battle of San Romano, Delacroix’s Liberty leading the People, and Goya’s Third of May, Lagarrigue re-contextualizes the conversation between painting and conflict, presenting it simultaneously as contemporary and timeless.
In these freeze frames of collision, the viewer is invited to slow down and digest imagery that is often rapidly consumed in the media and subsequently forgotten. The sensations associated with this experience are intended to provoke a range of emotions, from outrage to empathy and ultimately to connection and transcendence.
Jerome Lagarrigue’s forceful and dynamic portraits capture the commanding attitudes of his sitters, visible amidst their wide brush strokes and from the intimate distance in which they are painted.
Lagarrigue was born in Paris in 1973 and completed his BA at the Rhode Island School in 1996. His work has been widely exhibited in France and the United States, with paintings in major collections including, the Peggy Cooper Cafritz collection, the Reginald Lewis Collection, the Dean Collection, the Geroge Lucas collection and The Carmelo Anthony Collection, among others.
Classically artistically trained himself, Lagarrigue taught gurative painting and drawing techniques to the new generation of students of New York’s Parsons School of Design from 1997 to 2005.
Lagarrigue currently works and resides in Brooklyn, New York.
Lazarides is one of the foremost galleries in contemporary art, directed by Steve Lazarides and representing over 40 artists from across the world.
Lazarides works with a motley mix of artists, each with their own story to tell, who refuse to be categorised and who share Steve’s grit and resolve for showmanship. From spray painting to taxidermy, electrical installations to wall pastings, Lazarides’ artists and their shows are renowned for their defiant staging and contemporary art world rule-breaking.
The gallery has represented a number of long-standing artists since their artistic in-fancies, including 3D, Jonathan Yeo, JR and Vhils, while equally nurturing young and undiscovered talent traced from Brazil, Israel, France, China, the USA and the UK. Lazarides Rathbone in Fitzrovia is Lazarides’ flagship gallery and is set in a four storey Georgian townhouse.
Recent shows have included JR: Crossing, 2015, Oliver Jeffers: Measuring Land and Sea, 2015, and Zevs: The Big Oil Splash, 2016. To mark its tenth anniversary in 2016, the gallery presented large-scale group show Still Here: A Decade of Lazarides, featuring work from over 30 artists including Banksy, Jonathan Yeo, JR, Nina Pandolfo and Miaz Brothers.
Lazarides is widely recognised for its dramatic off site, off kilter events and theatrical group shows in major cities like New York, Los Angeles, and in London’s Old Vic Tunnels.