Carol Rhodes

18 April - 1 June, 2013

Private view
Wednesday 17 April, 6-8pm
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Carol Rhodes

The Beholder's Share

Carol Rhodes

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Two Buildings
, 2012, Oil on board, 47 x 56 cm

'…a kind of collage of mutually irreconcilable spaces, somehow harmonized into a unity. The effect is to structure the picture, not with a steely web of systematic perspective, but with an agglomeration of glimpses, of framed vignettes.'

Timothy Hyman on Sassetta, Sienese Painting (Thames & Hudson, 2003)

Andrew Mummery is pleased to announce an exhibition of new paintings and drawings by Carol Rhodes.

Since the early 1990s Rhodes has become known for a compelling body of work reflecting upon the human and natural environment, and how we visually and physically experience it. Her latest exhibition will include both paintings and a selection of the preparatory drawings that she makes for each of them.

Rhodes’ subtly distinctive paintings appear to have a fairly clear subject matter – edgelands, semi-industrial landscapes, places that serve other places like road networks, refineries, electricity generators and processing plants. They are images of transport, passage, circulation and migration. Art critic Tom Lubbock described them as ‘borderlands, somewhere on the edge of recognition’. There is, however, no simple relationship between the imagery and the meaning. The latter remains elusive. While it is clear that many of the things that Rhodes depicts have a functional purpose, they can also be read metaphorically.

Rhodes usually begins from a visual reaction to things in the world, but she develops her images through drawing and collage, usually from multiple sources. She has written of building up a 'pictorial story' in which some objects have a different presence and association than others. Nevertheless the paintings remain grounded in a reality held at the limits of representation. They must have spatial credibility (Rhodes is not interested in the 'abstracted' as such), and the brushmarks, while they have a literal presence, always investigate something in the world: is the ground hard, or wet; made of chalk or clay or mineral; covered in vegetation or exposed? Rhodes' paintings ask what might be revealed by distance, by moving away from something. Is there something concealed in plain view? Do we need distance in order to be able to see a new kind of 'close-up'?

Encouraging a close reading of Rhodes’s paintings, this exhibition will also include three items that have resonance with her work, helping to draw out its meanings. One is an Indian miniature painting from the early nineteenth century. Rhodes spent her childhood in Bengal and her work has strong affinities with some Indian court painting. (A new painting in this exhibition - River, Roads - is based on a drawing made on a recent visit to India.) The second item is an aerial photograph, from a 1926 original by O.G.S. Crawford, showing the site of Woodhenge in Wiltshire. Such images – revealing ancient sites invisible from the ground – were to lead to a new way of looking at, and thinking about, landscape, its history and meaning. The third item is a photograph by Luigi Ghirri, a late work depicting a ditch and an avenue of trees disappearing into the mist, evoking a search for the poetics and metaphysics of place and landscape.

Notes on the Artist

Carol Rhodes was born in Edinburgh in 1959 and spent her childhood in Bengal, India. Between 1977 and 1982 she studied at the Glasgow School of Art. Her work has been exhibited widely since the mid 1990s. In 2007 the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh presented a survey exhibition of her paintings, accompanied by a monograph. One of her paintings from the Tate Collection is currently on show in the exhibition Looking at the View at Tate Britain (until 2 June). Carol Rhodes lives and works in Glasgow.

For further information, please contact Mummery + Schnelle on:
+44 (0)20 7729 9707 or at: