Arusha Gallery is proud to present Milk, Smoke and Bones, a solo exhibition of new work from British artist Ilona Szalay opening at Alex Eagle Studio in London on 22 November 2016. The exhibition moves across town to Leyden Gallery on 29 November 2016.
Of Hungarian descent, born in Beirut, Szalay went on to study at Oxford University and Byam Shaw, University of the Arts, and is the recipient of many art prizes, including selection as one of the fourteen worldwide artists to invest in, by Rebecca Wilson, head curator at Saatchi Art.
Szalay’s new works retain her frequent feminine subject matter, here seen as archetypes; warriors, gods and children, but rendered with a timeless and eerie, poetic intimacy. Her passion for the touch of the paint is clear, the figures rendered with gorgeous sweeps, drops, delicate touches, the unfinished, flowing style evoking skill and confidence.
The large works on wood panels are a departure for Szalay. Rendered in the pose of Gainsborough portraits, these five full length silhouettes or white ‘ghosts’ stand proudly and facing front. Faces are undetermined. Free and flowing, pooling strokes of white oil define form with real weight and power and the classical poses and magnified scale of these bodies communicate a heroic and majestic strength.
In the smaller works Szalay’s skill as a storyteller is clear. Vignettes of groups and interiors call to mind the narratives of Sickert, with their intimate and mysterious interpersonal dramas. Are they cathartic visual diaries or fairy tales? There are props, indicators, clues to these confidential stories of magic and wonder. The viewer is invited to peer behind the curtain of these miniature performances.
Ilona Szalay Milk, Smoke and Bones
Alex Eagle Studio
6-10 Lexington St, London W1F 0LB
Private View, Tuesday 22 November 2016 6 - 9pm
‘In conversation’ event and cocktails, Thursday 24 November 2016 at 7pm
Show runs 23 - 27 November 2016 11am - 7pm (Sunday 12 – 6pm)
Show then relocates to:
Leyden Gallery, 9 Leyden St, London E1 7LE
Private View, Tuesday 29 November 2016 6 - 9pm
‘In conversation’ event and cocktails, Thursday 1 December 2016 at 7pm
Show runs 30 November – 11 December 2016 11am - 7pm