More on Music by David Cowley and Barbara Wakefield

An exhibition of paintings, sculpture and ceramics

Tuesday 11th – Saturday 15th September 2012
Opening hours: 11am – 9pm
54 The Gallery
Shepherd Market

A few steps from the bustle of Trafalgar Square, on the eastern side, is the entrance to St. Martin’s in the Fields. Open the church door and be drawn in by the music and the striking new stained glass window of this recently refurbished church.

This is the site that has inspired David Cowley’s most recent series of paintings. Using acrylic on paper and canvas he has taken the spaces of St. Martin’s in the Fields and the performance of Mozart’s String Quartet K.421 by the Lazarus Quartet to create visual analogies of auditory remembrances. Both subtle and bold dramatic colour, translucent layers and dense areas of paint all contribute to give the feeling of sound echoing, floating and reverberating within this space.

Over the years David Cowley has created paintings and sculptures based upon the performances of classical music concerts in St. John’s Smith Square, St. Alfege, St. Luke’s and many other City of London Churches. Performance, architectural space and musical score come together in paint to provide these visual and auditory analogies.

Imagine a musical score with its complexities of rhythm, pattern and code. Manuscripts laid on handmade paper, finely printed Baroque composition to the beauty of contemporary musical notations which challenge the traditional notion of the score, are source material for Barbara Wakefield’s finely worked porcelain panels.

The use of porcelain for the making of functional and artware is well known for its qualities of strength, whiteness and translucency, and it has also long been associated with sound, especially in the Orient. Barbara’s knowledge of musical notation leads from her experience as a musician to an individual artistic approach where sound is evoked in her technical treatment of materials on porcelain. Ceramic materials lend themselves to a multitude of textures and marks in and on the clay. By using processes of layering and techniques of printing and drawing, Barbara uses clay slips, pigments and glazes to build up layers from images on notation, musicians and musical instruments suggesting particular pieces of music.

Large and small slipcast porcelain bowls, with reference to sound within space both contained and of the air, compliment these panels also embracing the music of Bach to Glass.

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