WORKS IN EXHIBITION
In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated
October 15 - November 22, 2015
Opening Reception: October 15 | 6-9PM
Julie M. Gallery was proud to present In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, a new body of work by veteran Toronto-based artist Jiri Ladocha.
There is an intrinsic inquietude to Ladocha as a practitioner. His artistic career has led him to explore diverse mediums, which seem to absorb him entirely for a time period. For a moment, it is possible to imagine that his masterful command of a new path will make him settle. However, for those who are familiar with a career that expands now over five decades, it becomes obvious that the present body of work is only a trail that will lead to the next one. Ladocha is never comfortable staying still for too long.
The idea of a painting exhibition, something that the artist has not done in over forty years, emanated in 2014. Soon enough Ladocha had completed five canvases that elegantly managed to capture constant elements in his work—his appreciation for minimalism, colour, light and composition. It didn’t take long, however, until his understanding of three-dimensional resolutions to artistic ideas began to permeate his new pieces. Oil and acrylic on canvas was suddenly not enough, and a new direction for this exhibition emerged.
In the Middle. Somewhat Elevated, is structured in three sections. The first one includes a group of classical, two-dimensional works on canvas that marked the beginning of the conceptualization of this exhibition. With each work, Ladocha examines colour and monochromatic abstract representation of commonplaces.
Deeply inspired by Italian painter and sculptor Lucio Fontana, and the basis set by him for Spatialism in 1947, the works included in the second section convey movement, colour, space and three-dimensionality, allowing Ladocha to merge sculpture and painting in a mature and sophisticated way. In a group of what the artist refers to as three-dimensional canvases, an array of shapes emerges to the surface. Ladocha transcends conventional limits, entering a territory where the physical and intuitive exploration of the canvas as primary support for his work, becomes as important as his study of colour and composition.
The third section in this exhibition revisits previous bodies of work developed by Ladocha, offering new resolutions to permanent concerns and aesthetic inquietudes. Two canvases are strong references to Ladocha’s celebrated Mercury Run series, pieces that were originally done on wood panels and at a smaller scale. The artist also continues to expand his Wave series—the only three works in this show that have not been created on canvas. These pieces are the most direct link to the artist’s previous bodies of works, and perhaps a reminder that while Ladocha may continue to delve into new territories, his commitment to sculpture will remain at the center of his artistic practice.
Join us for the opening reception of In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated on October 15, 6-9PM. The artist will be in attendance.
This exhibition borrows its name from the contemporary dance masterpiece choreographed in 1987 by William Forsythe, and commissioned by Rudolph Nureyev for the Paris Opera Ballet.