The Brian Clarke mosaic for the From Life to Life, A Garden for George. At the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, London.
The garden was conceived and designed by Olivia Harrison and Yvonne Innes. Brian collaborated with the design and fabrication of a sinuous coloured path that unwinds through the garden and reflects the various stages of George Harrison's life. From Liverpool to enlightenment.
RECENT PAINTINGS AND STAINED GLASS BY BRIAN CLARKE ON VIEW AND FOR SALE AT PHILLIPS de PURY & COMPANY, NEW YORK
EXHIBITION 13 SEPTEMBER – 1 OCTOBER
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
London – August 12 – Phillips de Pury & Company will present an exhibition of selected paintings and stained-glass works by Brian Clarke, the British artist and a forerunner of contemporary stained glass, to be held at the company’s New York galleries from 13 September – 1 October.
His principle medium being light, Brian Clarke’s compositions in colored glass hold the power to transform a space. His work can be found in historic locations across the globe, imbuing the interiors with renewed channels of contemplation and also in monumental glass projects which have expanded the remit of the modern architectural experience. Equally important to Brian Clarke’s practice is painting on canvas which allows the artist the freedom to explore and build his abstract symbolic language and its syncopated order and disruptions — devices which are often applied to his compositions in glass. The work in both painting and glass aspires to the transcendental and poetic and illustrates the artist’s proficiency with working across vastly different scales.
Thirty works will be exhibited and will present the vital pollination between painting and work in stained glass that has existed throughout the artist’s career. The material in this exhibition is both a distillation of the artist’s oeuvre to date as well as a progression of style in which image-making has addressed with the figure and more narrative than in the past.
Highlights of the exhibition will include a series of seven large portraits of influential figures in the artist’s life. Study for Portrait of John Piper, 2007, like many of the works in this exhibition, uses the human skull as a starting point. The skull forms the basis for these personal portraits; representing the elemental anatomy and architecture for the subject’s intellect which is then built upon with the emotive and psychological powers of color and form. The British artist, John Piper who died in 1993 was a mentor and early influence on the artist. He is represented here frontally, reminiscent of the perspective employed in Piper’s still-lives. Backlit by a luminous orange sun, the subject’s opaque skull is analogous to the lead of a stained-glass window. Additional works include portraits of Andy Warhol, Kenneth Clark, Henry Moore and Ben Nicholson.
Seven large lead and stained-glass works featuring the human skull present a new twist on the traditional use of stained glass. In these works, the lead has become the dominant feature, inscribed with the artist’s drawing and accented with contours of colored glass. These works bear witness to Brian Clarke’s mastery of his art and reveal the potency of painted glass as a medium.
Don’t Forget the Lamb and The Office for the Dead both completed this year, are two large works in lead and stained glass that embody many facets of the artist’s approach — a sophisticated and unconventional use of a traditional medium that expresses the emotion of profound loss, in this case the artist’s mother, with color, verse, and wit. In Don’t Forget the Lamb, daily shopping lists written in the artist’s mother’s hand are rendered in lead. The Office for the Dead incorporates a prosaic reminder to buy groceries and medication alongside references to mortality and the Book of Common Prayer.
The introduction in the accompanying catalogue will feature an interview with the artist by Doris Saatchi.
NOTES TO THE EDITORS ON BRIAN CLARKE:
Born in 1953 in Oldham, Lancashire, England, Brian Clarke currently lives and works in London, New York and Munich. Clarke’s prolific and multi-media practice is built upon using light to explore the essential link between art and architecture.
Since the early 1970s, the artist has worked on over two hundred stained glass projects in collaboration with some of the world’s most prominent architects and artists. Some of Clarke’s most notable “art-in-architecture” projects include: the stained glass for Linköping Cathedral in Linköping, Sweden; the stained glass and painting for Apax Partners Headquarters in London, UK; stained glass for the Pyramid of Peace in Astana, Kazakhstan (with Foster and Partners); the design for the Great South Window at Ascot’s New Grandstand in Ascot, UK; the façade for Pfizer Inc. in New York, USA; a suite of 26 stained glass and mosaic ceilings for Norte Shopping in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and the design for stained glass in Chep Lap Kok Airport (with Foster and Partners) in Hong Kong, China.
Clarke’s stained glass works, paintings and drawings have been widely exhibited, including at: Faggionato Fine Arts (London), Tony Shafrazi Gallery (New York), Gagosian Gallery (London), Stadt Museum Munchen
(Munich), the Mayor Gallery (London), Whitechapel Art Gallery (London), the Sezon Museum of Art Annex (Tokyo), the Seibu Museum of Art (Tokyo), the Centre International de Vitrail (Chartres), Deutsches
Architekturmuseum (Frankfurt), Robert Fraser Gallery (London) and the Royal Institue of British Architects.
In 1993, Clarke was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Institute of British Architects. Clarke has also enjoyed close collaborations with artists such as Linda McCartney and has executed important set and album designs for Sir Paul McCartney.
13 September – 1 October
10 am – 5 pm (Monday – Saturday)
Phillips de Pury & Company
450 West 15 Street
New York, NY 10011