04 Jul 2013 • Amandas Ong
Stranger: An Exhibition of Self Portraits
Stranger is a fitting continuation of a 1987 show at Flowers Gallery that explored the importance of the self-portrait within an artist’s practice. At that point in time, the exhibition featured over 60 artists such as David Hockney and Elisabeth Frink – names that have now entered the canon of contemporary art. Now, a new generation of artists is taking on the same theme of self depiction in this group show, seeking to elevate the status of painting through portraiture.
The paintings in Stranger were completed over the past year to ensure that each work is representative of the artists’ current artistic goals. Tai Shan Schierenberg’s Self Portrait brings together different textures and manifests an astute understanding of light, creating an emotionally charged image. John Kirby’s faceless figure hauntingly references Britain’s final execution at Pentonville Prison. All the artworks shown at Stranger may vary widely in terms of style, but they are certainly united by a disarming honesty and willingness to bare the soul and leave it susceptible to all manner of probing interpretation.
Stranger: An Exhibition of Self Portraits is on until 31 August.
Flowers Gallery, 82 Kingsland Road, London E2 8DP
All images courtesy of the gallery.