01 Sep, 2019 - 30 Sep, 2019
Anthesis describes the flowering of a plant, from the point the bud opens. The word, being unfamiliar, brings to mind the more common ‘antithesis’. The conjunction of the two terms was deliberate in conceiving this show, for the idea of blossoming is inextricably tied to the inevitability of withering: anthesis contains its antithesis.
The seven artists in this exhibition are acutely aware not just of the magnificence of nature but also its fragility, a fragility made more palpable by the environmental disasters of our present era and the impending climate catastrophe we seem unable to avert. They explore nature at its tiniest as well as most expansive by expertly manipulating scale. The inside of a cell is magnified thousands of times, trees and landscape are contained in highly detailed but miniature renderings, and the whorl of petals is abstracted in intense colours that evoke the cosmic. The relationship of seeds and crops to history, tradition, and the formation of identity is another thread running through the exhibition.
The work of the artists in Anthesis is rooted in observation and a profound engagement with form, but expresses these concerns through diverse mediums and a range of approaches from pictorial to conceptual. It is immediately accessible for its visual elegance, but complex enough to reward careful and repeated viewing.