Paul Merrick: WORKPLACE GATESHEAD

29 March - 17 May 2014

Paul   Merrick   combines   painting   with   sculpture   and   the made   with   the ready-made. Investigating  colour,  materiality,  and  architectural  and spatial  arrangement  in  relationship  to the  history  of  Painting,  Merrick's  recent  work  is  the  result  of a  sustained  interrogation  of painting through the found object.  In  a  new  body  of  work  Merrick  has  drawn  upon  colour –  coded variations  of  standard  4  x  4 foot  units  of  plasterboard.  Selecting  each  board  from  a  standardised  industrial  lexicon  of building  materials, he  creates ‘surrogate’  Colour  Field  paintings,  which  are  then  punctuated by  collages  cut  from  an  ongoing  archive  of National  

 

In  a  new  body  of  work  Merrick  has  drawn  upon  colour –  coded variations  of  standard  4  x  4 foot  units  of  plasterboard.  Selecting  each  board  from  a  standardised  industrial  lexicon  of building  materials, he  creates ‘surrogate’  Colour  Field  paintings,  which  are  then  punctuated by  collages  cut  from  an  ongoing  archive  of National  Geographic and Wallpaper  magazines. Delicately pinned to each board are faded pseudo-scientific photographs of foreign and exotic plants  (monolithic  Cacti  and  smaller  species  of  desert flora).  Grouped  and  pinned  in  faded constellations and pitched against images of mountains and wilderness –The Great Outdoors- alongside the more contemporary escapology of Wallpaper Magazine’s luxurious Modernist interiors.  Merrick’s  collages  combine  nostalgia  for  the  global  reportage   of  the  past in  dialogic compositions with images and motifs of style and decadence; creating pictorial iconographies and  mythological  narratives.  Set  upon  metallic  surfaces and  pastel  hues  that  reflect  back America as consumed through the eyes of a working class Britain of the 1970’s and 80’s.

 

Merrick’s  collages combine  nostalgia for  the global  reportage of  the past in dialogic compositions with images and motifs of style and decadence; creating pictorial iconographies and mythological  narratives.  Set upon  metallic surfaces and pastel  hues that  reflect back America as consumed through the eyes of a working class Britain of the 1970’s and 80’s.