The largest solo exhibition to date by British painter Sarah Pickstone that will bring together new work and selected paintings from 'The Writers Series' (2013).
at CGP London
Sarah Pickstone, Rose, 2017, Courtesy the artist and CGP London
The Park has been a central theme to Sarah Pickstone’s work for two decades. It represents an imaginative space for play and exploration, where motifs of willow and rose are drawn alongside references to the act of making; both in painting and writing.
The Writers Series (first shown at the New Art Centre, Salisbury in 2013) investigates this very process of making; acknowledging the canon of women writers through recent history who cited literary connections to Regents Park (including Virginia Woolf, Katherine Mansfield, George Eliot and Sylvia Plath). Stevie Smith and the Willow (2011), winner of the John Moores Painting Prize in 2012 is also included in the exhibition.
'These paintings, lit by their own leafy syntax, by a deep sourced and communal imagination, fuse the mind, art, nature and the thinking spirit into an affirmation as big and unfussed as a sky.’ Ali Smith
The park and the creative process serve as starting points for the new series of large-scale paintings made for this exhibition. This new scheme of work was developed in response to the gallery’s surrounding Southwark Park*. References to Shakespeare’s The Tempest appear in Pickstone’s work of the same title, alluding to themes of political upheaval, the disturbance of nature and the physical act of making art; marked by the fronds of the lakeside willow sitting adjacent to Ada Salter’s Rose Garden (local environmentalist, social reformer and London’s first female Mayor).
Pickstone’s prolific study of roses from 2015 and 2016 form the basis for Rose (2017); a large red rose blooms from the grasp of a stocky fist, sketched from Picasso’s Guernica. Here, Pickstone’s Rose is at once both protest and life force.
* London’s first Metropolitan Park, established 1869.
Preview: Sunday 23 April, 2-5pm
26 April - 4 June 2017
Wednesday to Sunday, 11am-5pm