Light & Shade

Image Credit: Bail Out, Mi-Young Choi

Christmas Steps Gallery, 11 Christmas Steps, Bristol, BS1 5BS

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Tuesday 12 June 2018 – Sunday 17 June 2018
Opening Hours: 11-6pm daily, except Sunday 12 June, 11-3pm

Sightlines Projects is pleased to present a new exhibition of contemporary art featuring 12 artists from Bristol and beyond whose work explores the transformative possibilities of those most fundamental yet transient of artists materials - Light & Shade at the Christmas Steps Gallery in Bristol this June.

Artists have experimented with light and shade throughout history, pushing these opposite polarities to their extremes and exploring the power and the subtleties inherent within them. The artists in this exhibition use a diverse range of media and approaches yet share an interest in the ways in which light can be used to convey or elicit form and feeling.

Light's intrinsic relationship with the natural world is addressed by each of the artists, whether directly, through figurative representation, or indirectly, with abstract works. The lightness of touch in Emma Coop's reflective etching mirrors the fleeting moments that it captures in a lyrical representation of the play of light on water, while Helen Jones and Mi-Young Choi prompt a contemplation of the sublime and spectacular nature of the elements through their very different yet equally striking depictions of the sky. The sky at night is the subject of Louise Beer's minimalist sculpture; its rich opacity echoes Emilie-Christine P. Newman's encaustic painting in its active consumption of light by darkness.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, Marguerite Knight's white, mixed-media painting uses the play of light and shade to articulate its ever-changing form and textures and so does Renata Sinclair's web-like 'map', whose territories seem to drift and transform. Harriet Carter's ethereal abstract painting explores the effects of natural light on both the making and reception of an artwork, while Hattie Moore's translucent tree sculptures, devoid of shady leaves and branches, refract and reflect the light that surrounds them in an inversion of their 'natural' role.

Nocturnal overtones emanate from the deceptively simple abstract forms in an etching by Paul Harvey Scull, while strange and unsettling effects of light and atmosphere are evocatively conveyed in the eerie silence of Ioanna Sakellarki's photography and Ruth Wallace's ghostlike domestic interior, whose low-key lighting is reminiscent of film noir.

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Working towards a South West where talented artists thrive, and a resilient and connected visual arts ecology that inspires more engaged and diverse audiences to value and advocate for its work.

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