Danica Maier, ‘Between Her Jam and Ribena’, lace and dressmaker's pins, 2006. Photo: Peter Norman. [enlarge]

Danica Maier, ‘Between Her Jam and Ribena’, lace and dressmaker's pins, 2006.
Photo: Peter Norman.

Jane Thurley, ‘The Honest Sausage’, wallpaper on aluminium, 2004. [enlarge]

Jane Thurley, ‘The Honest Sausage’, wallpaper on aluminium, 2004.

REVIEW

Hortus

Surface Gallery, Nottingham
20 June – 22 July

Reviewed by: Bianca Winter »

‘Hortus’, showing work by Danica Maier and Jane Thurley, is a show of contradictory proportions: four pieces of work in a gallery the size of Surface Gallery at first seem barren, but become detail-rich as one looks closer.

Thurley presents three large-scale wall-mounted works produced during a study of London parks. Thurley’s medium is wallpaper and the visual effect created by layering and cutting away is arresting. Thurley uses different patterns to denote shades of light and dark just as Cézanne used warm and cool tones. The works tentatively swing between a clear image and a complicated mass of pattern, creating a somewhat illusory quality as a symptom of shifting focus. Though the images are interesting when viewed from afar, their scale allows for a varied and distinct viewing up close where one not only sees the three-dimensional effect of layered paper, but also appreciates the juxtaposition of incongruous patterns.

Maier’s work is more risqué. Maier constructs a pattern in lace from overlapping anamorphic line drawings. Successfully lit, the lace produces intricate shadows that are integral to the piece as a hint of its three-dimensional qualities. The anamorphic pattern serves to momentarily disguise the graphic representation of a man and woman engaged in sexual congress. The woman sits astride the man with high heels on that are outlined in pink lace, whilst the man reclines providing full view of his manhood, which is outlined in blue lace. The pattern is repeated by mirroring, suggesting a ‘coupling off’ – as dance partners preparing to tango. Once again there is a play between macro and micro, as the work offers a different experience up close.

Both artists present the viewer with pictures, but the real reward comes from looking closer and getting lost in the meticulous detail.

Writer detail:
Producer and fine art graduate based in the East Midlands.

bianca.weasel@gmail.com| www.bianca.org.uk

Venue detail:
Surface Gallery »
16 Southwell Road, NOTTINGHAM NG1 1DL

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