Lowbrow Art Movement & the work of Xue Wang!

If you missed our account on Xue Wang and Lowbrow here’s the detail.

GEORGE THORNTON ART

Coco de Mer

‘Coco de Mer’ by Xue Wang – Original Oil on Board Xue Wang, born in 1980, the year of the mischievous monkey Wang grew up in Northern China before coming to the UK to do an MA and finally setting up her studio in London.  Xue Wang gets much of her inspiration from childhood paraphernalia: Dolls, toys, stage sets and compliments them with the cultural heritage of Victorian, Vintage Fashion and pin-up imagery. Her overall artistic style and finished pieces visually represent the Lowbrow Movement to a tee. So what is “Lowbrow”? What does it aim to achieve and how did it come about? Hopefully we can answer some of these questions for you.

So how did low brow come about? The term “lowbrow” art came about in 1979 when after many attempts the artist Robert Williams finally received news that a publisher was willing to produce a book containing…

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The Wildlife Art of Katy Jade Dobson

Mother and Baby“Mother and Baby”

This young artist, based in Lincoln, (UK) demonstrates her love and understanding of her medium in her ethereal, colour rich paintings of wildlife. Inspired by the work of French artist Odilon Redon, Dobson brings a lavish quality to the animals that she depicts on canvas. Brush strokes, scratches and the sheer exuberance of the laying on of paint make her exciting representations of noble beasts a pleasure to behold. But given the popularity of animals as subject matter, evidenced in the success of David Shepherd’s work over the years, is Dobson’s work the 21st century’s answer to wildlife painting?

By way of comparison, David Shepherd’s work ‘Ahmed’

images

and Katy Jade Dobson’s work ‘His Majesty’

His Majesty - Copy

both show a bull elephant in his pride, fully alert and looking frankly magnificent. But how does our response to the different way these beasts are shown evidence a shift in taste in the wildlife genre buying public? Shepherd’s seemingly photo realistic ‘Ahmed’ appears in a dust cloud, set against a tropical blue sky, as though he has been captured pictorially in situ. But how realistic is that version of ‘in situ’? Is it so very different from the non-background to Dobson’s ‘His Majesty’? I would argue that both settings are alien to the majority of the public, most not having personally experienced the landscape in which an elephant roams. Therefore, the space given by Dobson to her multi-hued creature is as valid and as tangible in reality as the idyll represented in Shepherd’s work. This absence, this permission for the audience to view the elephant as they will, lends a more contemporary tone to the depiction of the bull, surely more fitting in a 21st century environment. The skill of Dobson in visually reproducing the animal and giving it its own space to be admired is a stunning tribute not only to her skill as a wildlife artist, but to her sensitivity and understanding of her genre.

Strength

“Strength” by Katy Jade Dobson

Signed limited edition print on paper. (Edition of just 45 copies)

Presented in an off white card mount and big black, ornate frame.

£345, spread the payment with Own Art. No deposit, followed by 10 equal monthly instalments of £34.50.

His Majesty

“His Majesty” by Katy Jade Dobson

Signed limited edition print on paper. (Edition of just 75 copies)

Presented in an off white card mount and big black, ornate frame.

£345, spread the payment with Own Art. No deposit, followed by 10 equal monthly instalments of £34.50.

Wisdom

“Wisdom” by Katy Jade Dobson

Signed limited edition print on paper. (Edition of just 45 copies)

All works are available in the Nottingham gallery. Come and see them in the flesh. For more information regarding these or original paintings please contact the gallery. {01159243555} {george@georgethorntonart.com}

The Importance of Art

gallery 5George Thornton Art, Nottingham

An auction of contemporary art at Sothebys this week provoked some thought about how an artist, or even a piece of art gets classed as ‘important’ and actually what this means to the art buying audience. The auction at Sothebys was described as ‘a considered selection of artworks from Post-War innovators through to a new generation of artists working today.’ Prices ranged from thousands to hundreds of thousands of pounds, and many of the pieces auctioned sold for well in excess of their estimate, some reaching fifty percent in excess of the upper limit. None of the artists included in the sale were the superstars of the modern art world – no Koontz, Haring or Rothko – and yet those included were described as ‘important’ – and this seems to be the factor that pushed so many of the prices achieved above the upper estimate price.

Sothebys

Taking a look at some of the works sold, mostly abstract, modern works in this instance, I got to thinking about how the art buying public might possibly be persuaded or influenced to buy ‘important’ works. Discussion in the gallery on this topic centred on the reasons why people buy art. Three main answers to that – because the audience like a piece; because the audience has a ‘space’ that a piece of art fits into; because the audience views art as part of their investment strategy. And we agreed that it is the latter that is the most likely reason a buyer would be influenced by a view from someone in authority – like an art auction house or a dealer – whose opinion they trust. Fair enough, but would the first two reasons for buying art not be arguably more compelling? Buying art as investment, especially as part of a strategy for use of one’s investment funds, is fraught with risk and potentially could lead to disastrous consequences. One can only wonder what the collectors of Rolf Harris’ work are feeling in the light of recent events for example, and if pieces are being purchased only for their perceived value designated thus by ‘experts’ do the investing audience actually LIKE what they’re buying? Or are they just going on trend or analysis and not caring about the aesthetic value of the art they are buying. I would argue that it’s more important to actually own pieces of art that evoke a response in the audience, that fill a space in the collector’s heart, and not in their investment strategy. One may or may not end up with a piece of work that increases in financial value but the buyer who purchases pieces that provoke a feeling, or a way of seeing something differently, is intrinsically more valuable to the owner and the asset has more value than can simply be measured in financial terms.

Clearly I’m biased, but our customer base is one that values the intelligent, affordable art that we offer. Frequent introductions of new artists of interest, and operating totally independently the Gallery offers a refreshing art buying experience, one based on helping you find the pieces that you will love and cherish, regardless…

Below is a little flavour of what to expect from George Thornton Art.

Just DesertsSweet Desserts by Xue Wang. Original Oil on Board

EL 10-442 100x76cm

Meadow Lane by Gail Troth. Original Acrylic on Canvas

Heading down to the Line

Heading Down to the Line by Jan Nelson. Original Acrylic on Canvas

Bold & Beautiful web file

Bold and Beautiful by Dean Fox. Signed limited edition of just 45 copies on paper.

16b

Barn Owl by Stephen Rautenbach. Original Bronze sculpture

George Thornton Art – What we offer? Watch the video!

George Thornton Art

George Thornton Art is a Nottingham based art gallery dealing in original works of art and sculpture by established local artists and international modern masters.

What we offer – Video.

  • Dealing in affordable, original works of art and sculpture.
  • Working with established Artists’ collected worldwide.
  • Each represented Artist creates work by utilizing interesting and contemporary techniques.
  • View art in your own home before purchasing.
  • Commissioned work available by selected Artists’ for that personal touch.
  • Pay via interest free monthly instalments supported by Arts Council England.
  • Professional and experienced staff to help you make that all important choice.

Represented Artist –

  • Alicia Dubnyckyj
  • Christopher Green
  • Darren Stevenson
  • David Bez
  • Dean Fox
  • Dean Kemp
  • Dilk
  • Ed Chapman
  • Elaine Bunfield
  • Gail Troth
  • Ian Hodgson
  • Jan Nelson
  • Jane Thomson
  • Jeff Childs
  • JJ Adams
  • Joel Moens de Hase
  • Kate Bentley
  • Kate Brinkworth
  • Katy Jade Dobson
  • Lawrie Williamson
  • Mackenzie Thorpe
  • Magnus Gjoen
  • Marion Bolognesi
  • Matt Colagiuri
  • Mr Mead
  • Nick Holdsworth
  • Nikki Douthwaite
  • Nom Kinnear King
  • Paul Lemmon
  • Rachel Tighe
  • Rachel Wood
  • Russell Hatton
  • Sara Sanz
  • Sarah Graham
  • Sarah-Jane Szikora
  • Stephen Rautenbach
  • Xue Wang
  • Yvonne Coomber
  • Do come in and meet the team – 12A Flying Horse walk, Nottingham, NG1 2HN – http://www.georgethorntonart.com – 01159243555

    The love of the city…

    Portobello Flowers low

    “Portobello Flowers” By Rachel Tighe

    Depictions of cities have been popular with both artist and audience for centuries. Virtually every movement in art has contained within it works that represent cities and arguably the iconography of these metropolises has been in no small part generated and reinforced by these representations. George Thornton Art has cityscapes on show in the gallery by three very different artists with three very different perspectives (quite literally, as well as figuratively) on major cities and it is very interesting to examine how their works represent the cities they have chosen.

    Alicia Dubnycykj is an exciting artist who brings a sense of the speed and vibrance of her chosen cities to stunning life on her large canvases. In ‘Arc de Triomphe’ an aerial angular view of the iconic landmark at night, the streetlamps and car headlights seem alive and appear to actually be flickering on the canvas. Use of reflective glossy paint, especially when viewed in an artificially lit environment, persuades the viewer that the work is alive and full of movement. A capital city is frequently the synecdoche of a nation and the technique here, of lighting the Arc de Triomphe itself as the visual focus of the piece set in a surrounding of darkness, punctuated only by the street lights that lead the viewer’s eye to the Arc itself, achieves this extremely well. The Arc de Triomphe ‘becomes’ France.

    Alicia Dubnyckyj Arc de Triomphe V  Gloss paint on MDF

    “Arc De Triomphe” By Alicia Dubnycykj

    In contrast, the representation of New York in ‘After Dark’ by artist Matt Colagiuri is a post impressionistic view of the city – the construction of the city and its identity signified through signs. Bright neon signs in primary colours contrast dramatically with the blackness of the New York night against which these are depicted. His use of photographic mosaic tiles set at different heights with a super glossy coating convey the sense of a vibrant and dynamic city purely through the use of recognised signs that speak of the United States. Still clearly a cityscape, but one that relies on a different way of defining and identifying NYC than that based purely on buildings.

    After Dark

    “After Dark” By Matt Colagiuri

    And by way of a total contrast to both artists is the work of Rachel Tighe. Her seemingly naïve representations of recognisable city views belie the cleverness in their execution. The artist confidently expects that the audience will recognise her interpretation of a given skyline and this gives her free rein to represent them in her own absolutely unique style. Having the courage to leave white, unpainted spaces on the canvas and to depict skylines of famous edifices (for example in Gondola View, Venice) in simplistic ways that still effectively convey the location is a real talent and shows the maturity of Tighe in her work.

    NYC rooftops at dawn (low)

    “NYC Rooftops at dawn” By Rachel Tighe

    So there you have it – three completely different ways of generating a response to cities, all highly effective and all most definitely provoke a reaction in the audience. They all reinforce the visual connotations of landmarks and skylines that are burned into our cultural consciousness.