albertz benda is pleased to announce Composer, two concurrent solo exhibitions by British artist Christopher Le Brun at albertz benda, New York and The Gallery at Windsor, Vero Beach, FL. Together, these encompass a new phase of Le Brun’s work which highlights the relationship between painting and music.
In 2015 the pianist Annie Yim premiered a new piano composition by Richard Birchall based on Cloud, one of Christopher Le Brun’s paintings. The concert was held in an exhibition space surrounded by Le Brun’s work, an experience that has encouraged the artist to make more explicit how central to his imaginative process music and ideas of composition have always been. A glance at the titles of Le Brun’s paintings made over the past decades confirms this: Sound, Score, Tristan, Scriabin, Walton. From a young age and throughout his formative years, music has had a profound impact on Le Brun.
With an emphasis on color and texture, Le Brun creates paintings that are not only alive with possibility and a celebration of the sensuality but are also very much composed. Classical music is defined by the extensive and refined structure of the compositions, where complex auditory space enables fine distinctions of emotion, imagination, and meaning. With his paintings, Le Brun addresses the unclaimed space between artwork and its audience.
The title Composer is deliberately intended to highlight the aesthetic and essential qualities of painting such as shape, scale, texture and color and their organization by composition. The term usually refers to the creation of musical works expressed in written notation. Chords, space, blocks, texture, tone, rhythm, arrangement, notation, scoring, layering, much of this language speaks equally to painting and music. Whether Kandinsky and Schoenberg or Philip Guston and Morton Feldman, there have always been these strong relationships and understandings. Under the hand of the painter and composer the raw material of noise becomes sound, visual chaos becomes form, and matter aspires to art and music.
The albertz benda presentation, opening in New York, will feature 12 new paintings, selected to demonstrate the breadth of scale in his recent works. The Gallery at Windsor will feature new works and loans in a show of 16 paintings. Accompanying the shows will be a fully illustrated book with an essay by the acclaimed curator Barbara Rose, a conversation between Christopher Le Brun and architect Sir David Chipperfield moderated by Tim Marlow, Artistic Director of the Royal Academy, and an introduction by exhibition curator Emile Bruner.