From 29th June – 8th August, The Rippon Hall is excited to bring you ‘Colour. Surface. Touch,’ an exhibition by Jessica Ritchie.

Jessica is a Dunedin based artist who is currently working from a studio space in Dowling Street. She is a qualified secondary school art and music teacher, working in an early childcare centre.  She completed her Master of Fine Arts (Distinction) at the Dunedin School of Art last September. This exhibition presents work which is a continuation of a series, which builds and extends from her MFA project Colour. Surface. Space.

Jessica’s paintings are a reflection upon the art of painting itself: abstract, drawing from colour, light, and music. Her work is concerned with process, with the exploration of the formal qualities of painting, and of the infinite possibilities of touch with paint. Located within the context of the field of abstract painting, the term ‘abstraction’ is used in a questioning and provisional sense rather than as a categorising or labelling term; considering complexity rather than reduction. The paintings show the potential of abstract painting to communicate light and space.

Drawn to anything reflective, lustrous, iridescent, and saturated, her recent paintings have focussed on intensity and exuberance. On closer inspection many reveal themselves as ‘accumulations of debris’ from building up of surfaces from scraped and gathered paint and other materials. The expressive force resides in the materiality of colour, texture, and excess. She is particularly interested in the discordant notion that a painting or thing might be two (or more) things at once – beautiful and grotesque for example or exuberant and abject. Stripped of traditional iconography, these works – made with paint skins, spray paint, plaster, glitter, gold leaf and iridescent paint — offer rich surfaces and textures, evoking a whole world of complex relationships beneath.

Don’t miss this fascinating exhibition running 29th June – 8th August; 11 am – 5 pm daily at The Rippon Hall.