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Friday, 3 June 2011

Georgia Russell Exhibition at England & Co Gallery

Cutting paper has become quite a trend in the art world, with whole exhibitions based on the method. Scottish artist Georgia Russell does this more effectively than most, producing wonderful, powerful yet transient works hand cut with a scalpel. Thousands of delicate incisions transform books and photographs into hauntingly beautiful structures. Some sit magically in antique bell jars while others are suspended like a spirits of their former selves.

‘Cutting through Time’ is Georgia Russell’s fifth solo exhibition at England & Co Gallery, though her creations are often seen in group exhibitions too. Having followed her work, I personally feel this is the best to date - a dark and austere collection of works that stand statuesque in the wonderfully bright white space. Perhaps the most momentous pieces are those that hang imposingly in the window, impressive ethereal spirals; they certainly draw you in from the street.

More than usual, it seems Russell is preoccupied with texture in this exhibition, experimenting with larger, more expressive cut designs which consequently have a greater presence and spirit. It is interesting to see the contrast between the delicate paper and the wild energy of the cutting. Multi layering and repetition create intricate patterns, and memorable shadows.

I have always loved Russell’s enchanting cut books, but in this exhibition I found the photographic works particularly intriguing. ‘Stereoscopic’ is static in its acrylic case and yet looking closer you notice a swirling movement, a gentle breeze travelling through the black and white landscape. ‘Wild Waters’ is another example where the cutting emphasises the drama and turmoil of the image.

‘Cutting through Time’ is a truly stunning exhibition that will amaze and astound even the most cynical of critics.

Visit the England & Co website here.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I can admire the technical qualities of the work shown but I find it unpleasantly sinister. As if the mastery of the technique trumps the abiding impression of the piece.

    I shall look up one of the bell-jar pieces because I'd like to see this technique in miniature.