Camille Hannah Barbarians
30 May – 16 June 2018
$7,700 incl. GST
Profound in their beauty, depth and sensuality, Camille Hannah’s paintings have an impact that is immediate and visceral. Fluid, gestural brushstrokes glow alluringly from behind the perspex on which they are painted, drawing the viewer close to explore the visual paradox of tactile layers of paint contained within the smooth, shining surface of a plexiglass screen. Utilising the expressive fluidity of oil paint and glazes, Hannah’s paintings echo the rhapsodic luminosity of the old masters, while evoking the sensory experience of film, video and the mesmerising back-lit screens that saturate our modern world.
Barbarians leads the viewer with subtle intensity through a dynamic installation of large scale paintings and mirrors. As we journey throughout the exhibition, reflected glimpses of the self coalesce with the paintings, creating spillage between the territories that define body and artwork. Enveloped and embraced within these abstract, operatic landscapes, we experience a kind of bodily extension, a potent sensation which exceeds rational grasp. This powerful spatial encounter forcibly infiltrates from the sentiendum (body) to the cogitandum (mind):
The violence of that which forces thought develops from the sentiendum to the cogitandum. Each faculty is unhinged [...] Each one, in its own order and on its own account, has broken the form of common sense [...], Rather than all the faculties converging and contributing to a common project of recognizing an object, we see divergent projects in which, with regard to what concerns it essentially, each faculty is in the presence of that which is its ‘own’.1
Traversing this alluring amalgamation of imagery, the viewer becomes both witness and participant in the creation of these compelling ‘virtual paintings’. These seductive, enigmatic images of desire echo the artist’s ongoing explorations around the expansive, unbounded nature of female libido and of the carnal disruption inherent to perceptual experience in the digital realm. This captivating installation is richly infused with the artist’s extensive enquiries into art history, philosophy, poetry, sexuality and contemporary culture, filtered through the personal narrative of each individual viewer. Barbarians creates a boundless, all-encompassing landscape in which the viewer is captivated by an exhilarating sensory experience. The lingering resonance of this profound encounter is at once deeply mysterious and powerfully revealing.
Catalogue text by Rachel Derum
1 Gilles Deleuze