London Abscape: Frank Bowling, Benjamin Cockett, Al Damidge, Marcia Scott

11 September - 17 October 2020

The new Berlin gallery space Bode Projects is pleased to announce the opening of the show ‘London Abscape’. The exhibition features the friends, colleagues and family of the influential London-based painter Frank Bowling. ‘London Abscape’ combines a selection of paintings, which are considered as an eclectic abstraction of landscapes.

Since arriving in the United Kingdom in 1953, Frank Bowling OBE RA has been an influential member of the London Art scene, both by writing and exhibiting his art internationally. His recent retrospective at Tate Britain acclaimed a new wave of global recognition and confirmed his status as one of the world’s leading abstract painters. With his studio in Peacock Yard, South London, Frank Bowling is at the centre of a community of Artists, writers and assistants of which the show ‘London Abscape’ represents a diverse selection. In fact, Marcia Scott and Al Damidge have the particular distinction of being trained by Bowling in his studio; they have worked alongside Frank Bowling on various pieces of which ‘Journey Along With Marcia Scott’ was nominated for the Wollaston Prize at the show of the Royal Academy of Arts, London. The painting ‘Collaboration with MS and Damidge’ was shown at Hales Gallery in 2017. Bowling continued to work on a number of Scott's unstretched pieces in paintings such as ‘R's Favourite’ in 2017, he has also incorporated Scott's works into his larger paintings such as the recent monumental painting ‘Towards Cadmium Red Light’ in 2019.

 

Frank Bowling’s work suggests an expansion of colour and form; the poetic and ethereal combination is an exhilarating influence for the Artists in the show. ‘Dawn’ from 1994, extracts impressions of an awakening landscape, a wasteland offering hidden resources, the textured surface suggests the hard edges of discarded, manmade objects, shimmering darkly against a rising dawn. ’S.O.M.  (Suddenly One Morning) Vl’ from 2014, echoes the theme of the sun, here in full beam; the complimentary off reds and cold green, interpreting its deep gleam, creating a geometricised, primordial icon.

 

Marcia Scott's vision informs of a humane, spiritual awakening in her painting ‘Meeting Of Minds’. Referencing Jackson Pollock’s drip painting, she proceeds in a full spectrum of enamel paint, echoing her running theme of the rainbow; global transitions meet against a vivid blue, in vibrant dynamics of intimacy.

 

Al Damidge exhibits ‘Shimmer’ from 2019, a contemporary study of light and natural geometry in a flow of impastoed paint. The work suggests the reflection on water, the tide over a crimson city, the drawing out of heightened nocturnal idyll. Al Damidge is also represented in the collaborative painting with Marcia Scott, ‘Looge’ from 2019. A translucent grey sky gives way to an ominous, violent, red streak descending downward to a field of volatile, expressive brushstrokes; suggesting divine intervention in the united strokes of the Artist’s collaboration.

 

Benjamin Cockett exhibits ‘The Myth Of The Submarine’ from 2019. On the coast of England, of what the Artist thought was a fast-moving periscope, an event triggered a contemplation of the authenticity of memory, he started exploring the subconscious towards the profound loss of life suffered by submariners in the decades of war and crisis. The painting references the legacy of post war painting from Jackson Pollock to Gerhard Richter. Benjamin Cockettlives and works in South Central London and has been a regular visitor to Frank Bowling and Marcia Scott’s studios, enjoying conversation and encouragement towards abstract painting. Cockett’s aspirations in painting and movement across the surface aim for ever more fluidity in his semi-abstract oil paintings.