Richard Wathen: New Eyes Every Time
14 November 2020 - 20 June 2021
MOSTYN Open 21 ‘Exhibition Award’ winner Richard Wathen’s solo exhibition comprises a new series of paintings.
Rooted in the historical canon of painting, Wathen’s work focuses largely on portraiture, depicting figures in states of hesitation and contemplation: listening at walls, pretending to sleep, moon bathing, or engaging in other apparent states of uncertainty. Wathen’s works depict the tumultuous and complex array of human emotions, from anxiety and sorrow to despair, brought on by the socio-economic pressures of contemporary living. The intensity created through the use of small details is powerful and emotional as an expressive gesture. His works subvert the genre of figurative painting through a bold play between figuration and abstraction, between the solid density of the matt surface and the fragility of the figures represented.
The subjects depicted often derive from a collision of image, thought, sound and memory, which over time, come together in an intuitive way. Following the cubist concept of a multitude of viewpoints in time, each figure remains in a state of constant flux, beyond the here-and-now. Their age, gender and gestures are left ambiguous, open to an irreversible position of hesitation and insecurity. By refusing to be fixed in time and place, Wathen’s work offers an investigation into the human condition in an age where an image is considered a proxy for a sentient being.
Curator: Alfredo Cramerotti, Director, MOSTYN
Artist Richard Wathen talks about his new exhibition ‘New Eyes Every Time’ at MOSTYN, Wales UK
Richard Wathen (b. 1971) lives and works in Suffolk, UK. He graduated from Winchester School of Art and received an MA in Fine Art from the Chelsea School of Art. Solo exhibitions have been presented at Annalisa Stevens, London; Max Wigram Gallery, London; L&M Arts, New York; and Salon 94, New York. Group exhibitions include Turps Banana Gallery, London; Hauser & Wirth, London; Blum & Poe, Los Angeles; Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, New York; Maison Particulière, Brussels; The Olbricht Collection, ME Collectors Room, Berlin; Kunsthalle, Krems; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; La Maison Rouge, Paris; John Hansard Gallery, Southampton; and CAPC Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux. Public collections include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and The Olbricht Collection, Berlin.