Words are Elves
August 19, 2016, Pound Ridge, New York: The Lionheart Gallery is pleased to announce a new multi-media art exhibition opening in September. Words are Elves by David Hutchinson features paintings, drawings, and wall sculptures that explore literary themes through use of severe line and vivacious color. Visitors are invited to see this innovative show at the Lionheart Gallery at 27 Westchester Avenue in Pound Ridge, New York, from September 9–November 1, 2016. The exhibition’s opening reception will be on September 24 from 5-8 PM, which will include an artists talk.
David Hutchinson has studied architecture in Scotland and Louisiana and philosophy in New York City. Now based in Pound Ridge, this conceptual artist centers his practice on the natures of communication and image codifications, finding inspiration in literature. In short, he translates writing into painting. His minimalist creations—based on works by French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre that analyze the writings of Jean Genet—employ a code that connects letters to paint colors. Some might say that Hutchinson systemically imagines the hues of our conversation.
The name of Hutchinson’s exhibition, Words are Elves, is based on a comment by Sartre. “It is an alarming observation that is not really lingered on, but in a follow-up statement Sartre compares a stylis to a wand—both having a magical ability to influence and transform imagery,” the artist says. Upon first reading this passage, he immediately felt a connection that could be expressed visually.
“Because my interests focus on the nature of conceptualizing images and the aesthetic experience, it seemed appropriate for me to turn my attention to a highly-regarded critique of Genet’s aesthetics,” Hutchinson continues. In his novel, Saint Genet, Actor and Martyr, Sartre offers an existential analysis of Genet’s psychology and morality. Sartre’s chapter on Genet’s aesthetics, ‘A Strange Hell of Beauty,’ is the material on which this exhibition is based.
In Hutchinson’s chromatic works, each block of color is a visual stand-in for a letter of the English alphabet: a = aquamarine, b = blue, c = crimson, d = dove gray, e = emerald, and so on, forming a rainbow-hued code based on color names. Other works are black and white layers of overwriting, using the original texts scribed on top of one another, over and over again, to create unreadable fields and patterns of formal scribbles. “In previous works I have tended to keep these two practices of ‘translation’ and ‘transcription’ separate,” Hutchinson notes. “In this exhibition I combine these two aesthetic approaches for the first time.”
“I find Hutchinson’s art fascinating to explore,” says Gallery Director Susan Grissom. “His unique style incorporates philosophical writings, a strong color palette, and a code to analyze that make you take more than a glance at this work. They are such inventive narrative paintings.”
The Lionheart Gallery is open Wednesdays through Saturdays, from 11 AM to 5 PM, and Sundays from 12 noon to 4 PM. For more information and directions to the gallery at 27 Westchester Avenue in Pound Ridge, New York, visit www.thelionheartgallery.com or call 914.764.8689.