Gabrielle Jones – In the Beginning – 122 x 152cm, oil and acrylic on canvas

Gabrielle Jones presents a series of grand scale paintings in this body of new work.

As a process-based abstractionist and expressionist, Jones’s paintings serve as documentation of the performative act of painting, capturing the rhythm of movement, thoughts and recent experiences as they play out in real time in front of the canvas. The work engages with colour and transparency to create depth, in a palette that borrows from those of the Old Masters, but with a modern twist.

The works in this catalogue riff on recently seen Rembrandt and Dutch Master paintings (AGNSW) and contemplate the surfaces, light and movement of the Indian, Baroque and Rococo works the artist experienced in travels during 2017. In particular, Jones reflects on the role of veneration, power, education and inspiration in historical subject matter; and how the grandeur of such subjects contrasts with contemporary art and culture where the “self” (or “selfie”) is paramount. The paintings thus reflect “Everything and Nothing”.

Jones has a natural intuition for harmony and rhythm, creating canvases filled with bold, colourful brush strokes, deliberately imprecise. These create a macrocosm of tangible organic shapes, where unscripted lines dance in and out of view, pulsing with an excitement that cannot be contained within their frames. They burst with a lush, rich intensity of colour, pushing deep tones back and pulling lighter marks forward. Each painting has its own rhythmic composition, underpinned by the musical influences in the artist’s  studio practice -a driving force for her confident brushstrokes, conveying powerful deliberation behind spontaneous gesture and continual movement. The forms reflect the “busy”ness of contemporary life and movement in travel; and the lushness and beauty of the surfaces, colours and textures- and the spiritually emotive effect- of the Old Master paintings the artist was seeing daily.

The result is a sense of ambience in weightless space creating moments of quiet in works that speak volumes. Underpinned by a maximalist ethos, these works give the viewer so much more that it is impossible to stand before the work without a quiet moment of awe.

All paintings available at Galleria Grefti, Umbertide Italy Contact: Joseph:+39 389 5694829


Extract from catalogue essay by Sarah Randall, I Wanna Be Adored, WestEnd, Melbourne, October 2017