Richard Walker, Making things out gradually


Richard Walker's new work explores the artist studio at night. Starting with a picture from his phone he uses a data projector, connected to his laptop computer and projects onto a mirror. John Yau writes in his post Studio Visit: Richard Walker that he visited his studio this summer and wrote

All of the images come from photos Walker has taken with his phone, which often result in something unexpected. In one painting, a red silhouette comes from a photograph he took of his shadow while walking up the stairs of the Glasgow School of Art, which was designed by the Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The red silhouette, which is against a white rectangle, becomes a foreboding presence that seems to be either entering the room’s darkened space or breaking through the picture plane into the viewer’s actual space. There is an Otherness to the painting, which is present in many of the recent works, a sense that something we can’t quite name is in the room with us.
 
The images below are from Walker's exhibition at Alexandre Gallery back in January. Roberta Smith reviewed the show for the Times and wrotes

Executed in oil on panel, Mr. Walker’s latest paintings depict rooms in the Haining, a majestic 1790 country house in southern Scotland that now offers artists’ residencies. Rather than work in an outlying studio, he painted from life, as it were, inside the distinctly Havishamish main house, most of which remains shuttered and somewhat chaotically arrayed with the furnishings and memorabilia of its last private owners.

The shadowy works emphasize painting’s traditional use of light and illusion by severely limiting the first and greatly complicating the second. Light emanates from lamps, the cracks of shutters and most of all from projections, created by Mr. Walker, of images of other parts of the house. As a result, while you are always quite conscious of the paint, applied quickly and surely to a dark ground, only gradually do you make out the furniture and objects, or distinguish them from the projections. 
Richard Walker
Library with Landscape, 2011
oil on panel
15 x 22 1/2 inches

Richard Walker
Blue Room, 2011
oil on panel
15 x 22 1/2 inches

Richard Walker
Carpets and Mirror, 2011
oil on panel
14 x 21 inches

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