22nd of May - 16th June 2010
'Culley and Sullivan'
A joint exhibition of new and old works of abstract paintings from two unique artists, Terry Sullivan and Derek Culley, based in Liverpool and Birkdale.
An exhibition curated by Nicole Bartos which takes place at Gallery4allarts, in both, Gallery 1 & Gallery 2.
Open Day: Saturday, 22nd of May, 12-4pm
“Culley & Sullivan” -
Exhibition Closing event:16th
June 2010, 5-7pm
Venue location/ addresses:
GALLERY4ALLARTS - Gallery
Opening times / Gallery 1:
Opening times / Gallery 2:
!Gallery also open
by appointment. Please, contact gallery by phone to arrange appointment. Thank
Artists' statements and curator's notes
"…pure form and pure expression, the aesthetic evidence that in art feeling and thought are prior to the represented world". Abstract artists, alike Kandinsky, worked with colours and patterns as a correspondent of their moods, and as Meyer Shapiro writes about, "They are the concrete evidences, projected from within, of the internality of (…) mood, its independence of the outer world. Yet the external objects that underlie the mood may re-emerge in the abstraction in a masked or distorted form. The most responsive spectator is the individual who is similarly counterpart of his own tension, but a final discharge of obsessing feelings."(Excerpt from Meyer Schapiro (1937), "Nature of Abstract Art"), pg. 8)
These 'portraits' of inner worlds and light, both in Terry Sullivan' s and Derek Culley's work are easily noticeable and enjoyed, trough 'ripples' like visual effect of the colour energy.. . Both artists have recurring mark making tendencies suggesting writing, a spiritual calligraphy, communication or, release within the metaphysical plane, prayers of the heart. Lastly, in some of both artists' work, the black comes to shape and delimit, cover or shade... As Charles Harrison puts it commenting on "Modernism"/ "Movements in modern art" (pg. 48), "...the activity of the surface of the painting was dictated by less by the actual appearance of the external world than by factors internal to the painting and to the procedures of composition." (Nicole Bartos, Gallery4allarts, (29/04- 7/05/2010)
Sullivan's work emerges like vitralium glass against light. The rich
colour vibration of his canvasses, takes us into the realms of the
metaphysical space with joyous sound visions and intricate layering,
details or openings into the artists' microcosm.
when he suffered an accident, his painting technique, the way of applying
has changed radically.
As an active ‘creator‘,
thirsty of work, since the 70's, he has been experimenting and been
preoccupied with collage techniques and mixed media, with earthly materialism,
and later with the idea of ' boundary' and frenetic spaces within the
painting surface. Gradually, his painting changed, using more diluted
paints and softer brush strokes, flowing paint, spraying/ graffiti
techniques, dripping, spattering effects and mark making, as if writing
using an abstract calligraphy. Colour has become the primordial element
in his work; 'light' and transparencies showing through the artist'
soul, as through a 'vitralium' glass.
In his earlier canvases, the artist mixes colour straight on the canvas, blending spaces together, layering and applying various monoprinting details, but is closer to real life and uses symbols as reminding of the material world and its energy that surrounds him. In his most recent work the artist distances totally from all traces and symbols that might be reminding of the ‘reality’ or the ‘material world’ and becomes truly his ‘higher self‘.
Bartos, Gallery4allarts, 2010)
Click on this thumbnail to enlarge.
Work images: Derek Culley, 'My tribaljourney', acylics on canvas/ board; 'The thing about shapes', acrylics on canvas and "Journey West", acrylic on canvas.
“Born and educated in Dublin, Derek Culley is mainly self taught
and intuitive in approach. The language Culley uses is basically that
of Abstract Expressionism in its various manifestations through Pollock
and De Kooning, adding to the mix some references to Celtic and other
sources. But if his language is a complex one, it is also one he has
mastered and can on occasion use for his considerable expressive purposes.
Since it is a manner which relies on a degree of impulse, his subjects
can remain embedded in a welter of signs and marks. But when everything
gels, the results have considerable imaginative impact and impressive
power.” (Desmond Macavock: The Irish Times 1989). Culley was
recently awarded a prestigious Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (New
“Derek Culley, ‘speaks’,
communicates with the brush and colour. The language he uses is not
that the ear and
physical mind, would easily perceive or understand, but there is a
language that is more aiming to reach and touch ones spirit. It is
a language that expresses the joy of life, together with pain, hope
and spiritual symbols. He uses marks and symbols, archetypes, numbers,
letters, with a confident and colourful stroke, layering colours to
create a musical pulsation, that sounds in your ear, if you wish to
hear about the mysteries, the ascension of souls to the light, that
is found in most works; sometimes, as effervescent strong colours or
much and bright yellow morning light.
"My approach to painting is my approach to painting. I seek spontaneity in my work that is reflective of my moods, my emotions, and my response to all that is beyond me and within me. My use of materials over the years seems to bear a pattern. For sad heavy works I have a preference for oils whilst for the more immediate works, I use Acrylic. I believe an essential aspect of my work is composition and my adherence to a commitment to structure. Colour plays an essential feature in my work. For me colour is as inherent a feature in my work as is composition. I rarely have a title for a work prior to execution as 90% of the time my work is a subconscious reaction which finds a title on completion. My reaction to a completed work is the title.....the journey's end for that particular work (or the beginning of the journey!)." (Derek Culley, April 2010)
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