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Diodic - 2011

Nick Wall is an emerging artist highly regarded by his peers. Former American/New Zealand artist Max Gimblett has mentored Nick Wall for some years now. Critic Wa ...

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Nick Wall is an emerging artist highly regarded by his peers. Former American/New Zealand artist Max Gimblett has mentored Nick Wall for some years now.

Critic Warwick Brown states,”  Nick Wall has followed in the footsteps of an important senior artist, Max Gimblett while still producing fresh original work”.  In Wall’s new abstract works Brown states, “Part of the calculated input is his preparation of rigorously geometric supports – round tondos or squares – which are left as raw linen canvas or are smoothly painted as monochromes. Over the past five years he has allowed dribbles of paint to run across these immaculate surfaces. This clash of opposites – minimalism with abstract expressionism – reflects Wall’s philosophy. When the yin and the yang are in perfect balance, serenity of the mind and spirit is promoted”.

Because of the consummate preparation, ideology and finish which goes into each work Wall has mounted only a few solo shows. He has been unable to paint for much of 2008 and 2009 while he built a new 50 square metre studio in his home in Auckland. Wall says, “My personally designed studio has been well worth the wait. My work has been always very personal, about my experiences, beliefs, questions and future. My wish is for the viewer to have some kind of connection with the work that is their own but perhaps mine too through a reaction to the language, colour (or non-colour) and spaces”.

Gallery Director Warwick Henderson says, “These paintings are of the highest quality and are amoung the best you will find in the genre of minimalist, colour field, and expressionist art. To see an artist of this quality practicing in New Zealand is heart-warming and indeed fortunate for New Zealand collectors. The show opens at the Warwick Henderson Gallery on Tuesday 22nd February 2011.

Text by Warwick Brown, January 2011 (As per Catalogue)

In his latest paintings Nick Wall continues his investigations into what happens when careful calculations are combined with controlled accidents. Part of the calculated input is his preparation of rigorously geometric supports – round tondos or squares – which are left as raw linen canvas or are smoothly painted as monochromes. Over the past five years he has allowed dribbles of paint to run across these immaculate surfaces. This clash of opposites – minimalism with abstract expressionism – reflects Wall’s philosophy. When the yin and the yang are in perfect balance, serenity of the mind and spirit is promoted. This effect is perfectly demonstrated in “Heart” where, in addition to the dialogue of paint, we are treated to the gentle collision of two circles, or one circle about to split into two, like an amoeba. There is nothing complicated going on here, but it is remarkably satisfying to observe.

“A Moment in Time” Appears to have already split off from something else, inviting us to create our own mental partner for it. The thinly drawn construct of lines creates a background, making the odd white forms float freely. Each with its own gold nucleus, they are perhaps cells which will shortly grow and form a new organism.

“Compass 1” takes a completely different tack, with its rigid orange square against a background of serrated paint. Here the contrasts are between the amorphous and the solid; the pure and the impure and between two quite different geometric shapes.

A diode is an electronic device that transmits electrical impulses in only one direction, in this case from artist to viewer. Participation is what the artist hopes for; a connection to his creative input. These paintings warrant thoughtful contemplation and the formation of a personal response. This ability to engage the mind is what makes a work of art.

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