THE word red has many connotations - it’s connected with revolution, change - although the traffic lights say stop - Tapies’s four red stripes in his Catalan Spirit, Turner’s fantastic sunsets, the burning of the houses of parliament, Rothko’s deep brooding reds, Clyfford Still’s gashed and torn paintings. It is seen as the colour of passion or sanguine, the quality of sturdiness, high colour and cheerfulness.
Two Sheffield artists, Peter York and Pat Hodson. provide different interpretations in a joint exhibition opening at Heartbeat Gallery this weekend entitled Red.
Printmaker York has selected work and reprinted plates with the single colour red as the focus though that was not the original intention of the work, allowing him to explore each plate’s potential in this new direction.
For York, red has a primary connection with the soil of his home county of Worcestershire where he would play as a child in the local Redstone caves and after heavy rain the River Severn would run red. He will be showing work printed from ground pigment from that region. “The wonderful earthy quality of reds in the pre-Columbian Americas, Africa and Australia always speak of a close connection with local source of colour,” he says. “The further development of colour chemistry opened up the potential for more vibrant colours over the centuries and has given us a wealth of reds to experiment with.”
The artist’s work is based on real and recorded places and created ideas. He has both subjects as starting and finishing point for his work.
Pat Hodson’s unique pieces are created using a fusion of hand collage and digital print. Her ideas involve using sequences of images to explore both the seen and the hidden in landscape; the patterns which underlie the apparent chaos of organic life and the structures, symbols and myths with which human beings impose order on the environment.
In the work, different visual and narrative stories interweave, interconnect and are continually deconstructed and recreated.
Hodson’s techniques involve layering paper tissue and silk using cellulose paste creating a strong complex ‘substrate’. Over this tactile, multi-layered surface is printed a digital image. Embedded within the layers are fragments of scribbles, resist dyed shapes and pattern, scraps of maps, diagrams, cut shapes and thread. This technique allows text, colour and pattern to be hidden or revealed through interplay between the waxed translucent surface and the layers beneath.
Peter York - Pat Hodson: Red opens at the gallery in the Orchard Centre, West Bar Green, on Friday evening and then continues Tuesdays to Saturdays until June 30.