Phillips, in Collaboration with HENI, to PresentBrian Clarke: Vespers, a Dedicated Exhibition of Works by World-Leading Stained Glass Artist Brian Clarke
On View at 30 Berkeley Square from 5 August to 10 September 2021
© Mary McCartney
Phillips is pleased to announce Brian Clarke: Vespers – a spectacular exhibition of works on paper by architectural artist and painter Brian Clarke. This debut of Clarke’s monumental new cycle of paintings and mixed media collage will go on view to the public at 30 Berkeley Square from 5 August to 10 September 2021 and will be available for sale via the HENI Leviathan online platform.
Delayed for over a year by Covid restrictions, this exhibition’s unprecedented scale now allows Vespers, begun in 2019 and continued again through lockdown, to be seen in its full narrative arc. Over 500 works in watercolour form the centrepiece of the exhibition, in which Clarke uses the form of the poppy as the starting point for a strikingly inventive investigation into abstraction and the liquid nature of colour.
Gathered together, writes Robert Storr, they make “an explosive bouquet of natural beauty at its most ephemeral, given that all truly natural things are inherently ephemeral and that beauty assumes its greatest pitch and poignancy when it has been wounded”, employing Clarke’s unmatched experience working with light to evoke the ‘huge walls of flickering colour’, the ‘harnessed euphoria’ he explores through his practice in stained glass, tapestry and ceramic.
“I tried to see if I could capture not so much how a poppy looks, but that feeling that they have of very delicately balancing their beauty on top of those tender stems which drip with great speed out of the flower down to the ground; other times they gather together like communicating things, or cluster to form extraordinary, interwoven heraldic patternsThey feel, when I make them, choreographing some story across the sheet, like little prayers – as near as a post-Darwinian Realist can get to saying a prayer.” — Brian Clarke
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