Paintings and Constructions
Michael Blake, Geoffrey Rigden and Robert Welch
5th June – 26th June 2016
This is something to look forward to, an exhibition of three of my favourite artists, in a great new space, at the seaside. There will be the added poignancy of seeing Geoff’s work again, only a few months after his death. He admired the paintings of Mick and Rob, and they, like very many of us, treasured him as an artist and as a friend. Although distinctly different from each other, I think the works of all three share a similar sensibility. The feelings and observations which generate them have been filtered through an extremely attentive decision-making process. Everything that happens in them, everything that we see – the colour and touch, detail and image – has been felt for. Discoveries have been made through an age-old trust and understanding that this visual language, if used with invention, can speak to us and move us, as long as we are able to give it some time. It may take some slowing down, or an activity like listening quietly, to move into the world of these lovely, rewarding works. They operate on their own terms, being distillations of years of continuous studio practice, but I like to think of them as generous and patient, and prepared to wait for us. It will be worth travelling to Deal to see, in a marine light, this gathering of some excellent paintings and constructions, and to celebrate the long friendships of the three artists who made them.