Maureen Paley is pleased to present Andrew Grassie’s second solo exhibition at the gallery.
Grassie’s work opens different layers of discourse, one layer dealing with documentation, another with the fact that he has turned photography into painting. What is the relationship between reality and illusion? The work debates the potential of documentation as a perfect surrogate for the original. At first glance it is hard to tell Grassie’s egg tempera paintings apart from photographs. When looked at from up close they gain very subtle painterly qualities. Their small format invites the viewer to come closer and study them very thoroughly. A tension exists between the ‘softer’ painterly surface and its quality as an object.
This exhibition represents a move away from a set of imposed rules determining the images in the paintings. The challenge was to unearth some other criteria for the selection of images and not revert to a ‘themed’ show. These were chosen from a bank of thousands of the artist’s random photographs, his ‘outtakes’, as it were. The few images which have graduated to paintings appear still as fleeting snapshots, yet the intensity with which they are conceived (in paint) imbues them with a presence that exceeds their entitlement. This contradiction has focused the work which examines ideas relating to the hidden and the exposed, the present and that which is veiled. Views of objects and locations that are carefully rendered but not fully seen.
Solo Exhibitions include Andrew Grassie: Painting as Document, Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburgh, 2008 (cat.), New Hang, Art Now, Tate Britain, London, 2005. His work was also presented at the Whitechapel Gallery, London, in 2009. Selected publications: Archive, Johnen Galerie, 2010, Andrew Grassie: Private, Tate New Hang, Group Show, The Making of the Painting, Maureen Paley/Sperone Westwater, 2006, Art and Photography, Phaidon, 2003.
Works are held in the Tate collection and the Government Art Collection. Grassie is working on ongoing commissions for the Goetz Collection, Munich and Rennie Collection, Vancouver. He lives and works in London.