Rhys Coren’s pulsating visual language spans across a variety of different media. Over the last few years, his multidisciplinary practice has abstracted mathematical structure, blending and fusing television, cartoons, football kits, poetry, fashion, furniture design and records sleeves; re-presenting them as painted marquetry, animated works, performance and installation. Coren edits imagery, simplifying some parts and embellishing others, to cross-contaminate disparate source material into pleasure-filled works. This new body of work rewinds on this abstract visual language, returning to a particular crossroads in his practice at which certain information (like the drawn line) was removed –kick-starting a new journey, at a slight tangent. Authored by hand by means of color and texture, sources are blended and married to evoke a musical feeling of existing elsewhere, while rooted in the real.
Coren’s boundless paintings are attributed to animation, capturing rhythm and attitude through buoyant composition and texture. Combining and collaging animation or cartoon stills —frozen moments that would otherwise fly by in a twelfth of a second, Coren’s own drawings evolve into enigmatic compositions. With only a few colors in most works, time is spent fetishizing over the choices and subsequent combinations of these colors, as well as the various subtle differences in texture. Emulating attitude from 1960s, ’70s, and ‘80s records and animation, these influences are visualized in relationship to Josef Albers’ illuminating color theory.
Coren’s vibrantly witted works are focused on the boundaries of representational imagery dictated by line. In this body of work, Coren is taking a more direct, pictorial approach. The idea of the black or white, hand-drawn cartoon line is a way of creating a representational image that also conveys rhythm. The line is ‘literal’ as in undeniably cartoonish, and ‘literal’ as in representational. The cartoon line, with all its loops and wobbles, borrows the language of movement —splashes, explosions, puffs of smoke, noise, speed. It somehow creates space, and the idea that a moment has been trapped opens up more of a psychological, or imaginary space. What was the frame before? What is the frame after?
About the artist
Rhys Coren (b. 1983, Plymouth, UK) completed a Postgraduate Diploma at the Royal Academy of Art in 2016 and lives and works in London (UK).
Recent exhibitions include Love Motion at the Royal Academy of the Arts, London (UK) as part of Lumiere Festival 2018, Whistle Bump Super Strut, a solo exhibition at Seventeen, London (UK) in March 2017 and click, click, click-clap-click, a solo exhibition at galeriepcp, Paris (FR) in December 2016. He also recently curated the group exhibition Cuts, Shapes, Breaks and Scrapes at Seventeen, London (UK) alongside Gabriel Hartley and he has co-founded curatorial projects including Opening Times and bubblebyte.org. Coren has an upcoming exhibition Old Hundred, Main Street Video at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT (US) in August 2018.
Recent group exhibitions include Any body suspended in space will remain in space until made aware of its situation at Temnikova & Kasela Gallery, Tallinn (EE) in 2018; DEAD HEAT, Kunstraum Ortloff, Leipzig (DE); Art Video for Kids at Kunsthall Stavanger, Stavanger (NO), and the Drawing Biennial 2017 at Drawing Room, London (UK) all in 2017.