THESE THINGS MAKE ME HAPPY: Iain Nicholls
3 - 19 October 2014
These works may be viewed as extended sketchbooks or a continuous stream of thought. The artist was also invited to expand the exhibition on the gallery walls during the show.
Iain is fascinated by consciousness - what is a thought, where is a thought? For him painting works best when it gets to the heart of this fundamental question, as it is a bridge between the physical and the mental. Taking the mind for a walk, to coin a similar phrase by Paul Klee, into memories and associations, playing creatively with what is there.
The artist’s approach for these works involved a kind of comic strip layout, allowing ideas that continuously spring to mind whilst painting to now stay put. This approach differs from his previous practice in that ideas used to get lost with the angst of trying to arrive at a ‘significant’ image. Iain was at a point where he believes every image has equal significance and beauty.
He wants painting to be playful in the best sense of the word, like a game full of rules, which are asking to be broken and redefined. Recursion has always interested him and he has started to use this more overtly in this work, which opens up many interesting possibilities.
“This is ‘painting about painting’ as they say, but also it’s more like painting about my painting. Everything in these paintings means something to me. I hope others looking at it, if not getting the specific meanings at least can see that these paintings, these things make me happy.” Iain Nicholls, 2014
Iain lives and works in Darfield, near Barnsley in South Yorkshire. He studied painting at Chelsea School of Art and the Royal College of Art.