Glenn Littlechild’s painting achieves the extremely difficult feat of engaging with the legacy of Abstract Expressionism in a way that manages to be both contemporary and interesting. Whereas Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko were insistent about the correct way to understand their abstract images as expressions of sublime experience, the paintings exhibited here remain ambivalent about the communicative potential of their symbols and gestures. Some of these symbols are conceived as indexical of meanings that Littlechild works out on the always-evolving chalkboards that accompany his work. They refer to ideas about the relation of ancient cultures to alien civilisation, attempting to capture or explain something of the intense, or sublime, experiences the artist cites as the inspiration for the paintings. This hybrid of abstraction and conspiracy theory is original and compelling, and undertaken with absolute sincerity. It manages to be equally about abstraction, the communication of feeling, and popular culture.
As a visual artist my painting practise leads on from the legacy of Abstract Expressionism in combining traditional and contemporary styles. My works constantly act as devices to communicate the potential possibilities of these experiences by using symbols and gestures. Some of these symbols are conceived as indexical of meanings that I work out on the always-evolving chalkboards that accompany my work. My works refer to ideas about the relation of ancient cultures to alien civilisation, attempting to capture or explain something of the intense, or sublime. These possible phenomenon and spiritual moments are relived and exploited using my painterly process. The mixed origins of abstraction and conspiracy theories become generated from on-going research where I use historical and contemporary writers, artists, philosophers and theorists to research the sublime and ancient cultures.
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