Returning to Brocket London for the second chapter of his recent collaboration with Italian dance artist and choreographer, Agnese Lanza, Jack Bullen presents a series of paintings, monotypes and installation transcribing Hans Holbein's 'Totentanz', or, 'Dance of Death'.
Bullen and Lanza have collaborated for many years to develop and interpret the theories of Austro-Hungarian Movement Analyst, Rudolph Laban (1879-1958), exploring how to transfer his principles on to the canvas. Totentanz is their latest study of Laban’s practise that sees the artists transcribe the macabre Renaissance woodblock prints through multiple mediums that ultimately provide the basis for a body of exceptional painted works and gallery installation.
With this series, Bullen has complimented the abstract movement of his central characters with colour theory and alchemical history. Working with the backdrops of early Renaissance masterpieces, as homage to Holbein, and fabricated using techniques of that time, the artist combines pigment properties and colour association, with symbolism and planetary attributes to identify not only the weight, speed and dynamism of each character, but also their associated personality traits. An eight-panel folding screen will create a 3-dimensional arena in which to engage with 2-dimemsional imagery through a bold reinterpretation of Holbein’s The Ambassador’s.
A full colour catalogue accompanies this exhibition with contributions from experts in Laban’s practise, including one of his first students at a dance school he established for children of the Kindertransport.