Presenting a new exhibition in Barcelona March 5th - 8th showcasing works by resident creative Connor Addison - Sublime Affliction, at Groc Studios.
“Whatever is in any sort terrible or operates in a manner analogous to terror, is a source of the sublime; that is, it is productive of the strongest emotion which the mind is capable of feeling.” - Edmund Burke: A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful.
Much of Connor’s work appears as large frescos on linen that borrow from the renaissance, religious art, film, minimalism and constructivism in which figures live in imposing brutalist landscapes and art galleries.
Figures, often reclined, interact with imposing minimal forms or are bound by objects of restriction, such as chains. His work, however, is not confined to just these fresco like paintings but also features text, sculpture, hyperreal works and small paintings from which a greater visual language has developed.
Emerging from Connor’s background in philosophy, his main body seeks to depict the human perspective in conversation with sublime experience. Works resemble theatrical stages on which figures interact with their own existential condition, limitation and invisible forces. Through this, there is a sense that it is because we are limited and vulnerable that experiences of love, freedom and life can become something so meaningful.
That life’s transience and fragility, whilst inspiring terror, also stimulates its beauty. Afflicted by experiences of love and death, his paintings possess an undercurrent of anxiety and tension but also stoic dignity and transformation. Instead of false optimism and cynical pessimism, his work invites a surrender to the human condition. That happiness in life possibly flourishes when we invite fear into our hearts.
As the son of interior designers, Connor developed a strong interest in draftsmanship, architecture and art from an early age. Teaching himself photography and painting, he studied Fine Art at Central St Martins,
London. Finding too much art ‘philosophy’ in place of technical vigour at St Martins, he went on to study Politics, Philosophy and Economics in the city where his parents met: Manchester.
Learning of Existentialism, History and Aesthetics motivated deeper reflection on the human condition and its representation. While nurturing a discursive range of influences and love for the rich history of religious and secular art as sources of reinterpretation, his work avoids being categorised as emblematic of any particular movement.
His 'Sublime Affliction' series, focuses on contemporary love and this excerpt below is from our previous conversation that you can read here to find out more about the talented young artist and the ideas behind his work.
"The vulnerability of love is manifest in deep connection and tension expressed in moments of physical affection. It is a dance of interlocking beings, capable of cultivating some of the strongest and most rewarding emotions in our emotional field. When we bond with another, we find ourselves in chains. Chains which are sources of great power welded together by unbreakable trust. But equally, we are captured by the movements and desires of the other, vulnerable to the tension of two souls pulling in different directions. Reconciling a capitulation of the self and an authentic expression of ones inner-world strikes a delicate balance in which everything can be gained and lost. The fear and beauty found in the power of love." - Connor Addison (In conversation with Psychic Garden)
Currently he practices in Barcelona (Catalonia, Espana) with a community of artists at Groc Studios where the exhibition is being held, between the 5th & 7th of March 2020. Get there between 6 - 9pm on the opening evening for an exclusive preview and performance !
- PSYCHIC GARDEN