brian blanchflower

the substance of colour

7 june - 6 july 2019

Artist talk:
3pm Saturday 15 june

Colour is a unique language. It is an extraordinarily subtle one. In painting it can give rise to feelings which are somehow inexpressible yet nevertheless real. As the British artist Bob Brighton [1936-2017] who devoted his life's work to colour said: "There is no other language quite so eloquent"

Brian Blanchflower, May 2019

Brian Blanchflower is one of Australia's most important living artists. In The Substance of Colour he presents several groups of works completed since 2005, most of which have not been exhibited before; some not exhibited in Perth before; and some which have only appeared in survey shows here. The artworks reveal an ongoing interest in the octagon form as a vehicle for colour, the condensing of paint/matter into horizontal blocks of colour, and the concentrated focal points of colour as a means of activating monochrome surfaces.

Blanchflower arrived in Perth from the UK in 1972 whilst in his early 30s. It was a time when a new generation of artists were challenging the old order of the art world, resulting in a rise in performance, conceptual, installation, and minimalist art movements. As an artist he was seeking a new way of envisaging the world and challenging the crisis in painting.

He combined the dense histories of his UK homeland and the vast spaces of his new home in Western Australia to create his own unique visual language, including his signature Canopy paintings from the 1980s. They look to the cosmos, yet are immediate and present, referencing memory, time and space. Importantly, they are also about the materiality of paint and the presence of the viewer. In essence, he attempts to bring together macro and micro worlds, acknowledging the energy and atoms that inform all creation. He has noted that "the most important 'ingredient' in his paintings is that which is not painted: the unseen, the unknowable, the unnameable." [space-matter-colour exhibition catalogue, Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, UWA, 2010, p.1]

The Canopy series have continued to the present, becoming more monochromatic in recent years. Parallel series of works include his Megalith and Concretion paintings, exemplars of which are included in this exhibition. They are elegant examples of minimalism, with lush monochromatic surfaces of sensual marks that have been built up, often over several months, to become a dense layer of paint with an extraordinary textured surface. They also, via their titles and substantial mass, refer to the Earth, vast time periods, geological evolution and prehistoric sites in Britain.

The Concretion series consists of long, narrow panels of paint and matter. Each work has a particular ratio of height to length. They came about from the idea of joining multi-panelled pieces together, thus in essence, Four Black Boxes 2005 directly led to Concretion 1:4 [Indigo] 2005-6. These works also hark back to the earlier series of Nocturnes he was painting in the early 1980s, sharing a surface of thick bituminous paint mixed with sand.

They are accompanied by several other series of works in this exhibition that explore colour, often within the structure of an octagon - a shape that resonates with him as a coming together of a circle and a square, and for its ability to form a dynamic rhythm when placed in a line. This shape also appears in a series of octagon shaped lidded boxes. Gleaned from opportunity shops and modified, Blanchflower has used them as a pleasurable opportunity to explore colour.

A group of mainly square paintings, with concentrated focal points of colour on a monochrome ground are intended for quiet contemplation. Blanchflower notes that, "they deal with origins, both personal and universal. I like to think that they also suggest sounds." [Artist statement 2019]

It has been nearly a decade since Blanchflower's last major showing of work in Perth [a survey exhibition at Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery 2010], and 16 years since his last commercial gallery solo show in Perth [Goddard de Fiddes 2003]. More recent exhibitions include a survey exhibition at the Drill Hall Gallery, Australian National University, Canberra in 2016, and solo exhibitions at Liverpool Street Gallery and Charles Nodrum Gallery. His artworks can be found in numerous important public, private and corporate collections across Australia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

brian blanchflower artwork
twelve dimensions
acrylic on canvas on wood
30 x 30 x 3.75cm [x12]
2009
$42,000
brian blanchflower artwork
eight octagons
acrylic , silica on cotton canvas on wood
30 x 30 x 3.75cm [x8]
2008
$30,000
brian blanchflower artwork
four black boxes
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica, jarrah charcoal on linen
33.5 x 154 x 7.5cm [overall]
2005
$18,000
brian blanchflower artwork
bar
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica on linen on plywood
11 x 62 x 4cm
2005-09
$3,000 sold
brian blanchflower artwork
concretion 1:4 [indigo]
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica on polyester/cotton
38.5 x 153 x 4cm
2005-06
$18,000 sold
brian blanchflower artwork
concretion 1:10 [telluric]
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica, sand on polyester/cotton
38.5 x 381 x 5cm
2008-09
$65,000
brian blanchflower artwork
concretion 1:7 [black]
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica, jarrah charcoal on wood
43 x 301.5 x 5cm
2014-17
$55,000
brian blanchflower artwork
concretion 1:6 [green/gold]
micaceous oil, acrylic, pumice, silica on wood
36.5 x 215 x 5.5cm
2007
$30,000
brian blanchflower artwork
concretion 1:12 [mineral violet]
oil, acrylic, pumice, silica on polyester/cotton
30.5 x 366 x 5.5cm
2011-12
$60,000
brian blanchflower artwork
painting in five parts [yellow]
acrylic on linen
56 x 324 x 3.5cm [overall]
2006-10
$19,000
brian blanchflower artwork
painting in five parts [two yellows]
acrylic on linen
134 x 185 x 4cm [overall]
2015-19
$16,000
brian blanchflower artwork
megalith [graphite grey]
acrylic, silica on polyester/cotton canvas
168 x 56 x 6cm
2011-12
$20,000
brian blanchflower artwork
megalith [caput mortuum]
acrylic, silica on polyester/cotton canvas
168 x 56 x 6cm
2012-16
$20,000
brian blanchflower artwork
megalith [yellow]
acrylic, silica on polyester/cotton canvas
153 x 39 x 5cm
2011-13
$17,000
brian blanchflower artwork
small megalith with markings
acrylic on linen on wood
61.5 x 21 x 3cm
2012
$3,000
brian blanchflower artwork
brighton meditations 1
acrylic on cotton canvas
112 x 112 x 3.5cm
2016-17
$10,000
brian blanchflower artwork
brighton meditations 2
acrylic on linen
109 x 101.5 x 5cm
2016-18
$9,000
brian blanchflower artwork
brighton meditations 3
acrylic on linen + wooden frame
124.5 x 124.5 x 4cm
2016-18
$12,000 SOLD
brian blanchflower artwork
brighton meditations 5
acrylic on cotton canvas
81 x 81 x 5cm
2016-18
$8,000
brian blanchflower artwork
horizontal float 1
oil, acrylic on linen on plywood
15 x 43.5 x 2cm
2007
$1,500 SOLD
brian blanchflower artwork
horizontal float 4
oil, acrylic on linen on plywood
15 x 45 x 2cm
2007
$1,500 sold
brian blanchflower artwork
horizontal float 5
oil, acrylic on linen on plywood
15 x 45 x 2cm
2007
$1,500 SOLD
brian blanchflower artwork
horizontal float 6
oil, acrylic on linen on plywood
15 x 45 x 2cm
2007
$1,500 SOLD to turner galleries art angels
brian blanchflower artwork
double float 1
acrylic on linen on plywood
27 x 29 x 2cm
2006
$1,500 SOLD
brian blanchflower artwork
diptych [inner light]
acrylic on polyester/cotton canvas
153 x 121 x 7cm [overall]
2011
$35,000
brian blanchflower artwork
double float 2
acrylic on linen on plywood
27 x 22.5 x 2cm [overall]
2006
$1,400
brian blanchflower artwork
double float 3
acrylic on linen on mdf
27 x 20 x 2cm [overall]
2006
$1,300
brian blanchflower artwork
blue octagon
acrylic on linen on wood
90 x 90 x 5cm
2009
$11,000
brian blanchflower artwork
portrait of an octagon
acrylic, silica on linen
33.5 x 32 x 2.5cm
2010-11
$3,000
brian blanchflower artwork
impact [blue]
acrylic on cotton canvas + wooden sphere
61 x 61 x 5cm
2005
$7,000
brian blanchflower artwork
impact [purple]
acrylic on cotton canvas + wooden sphere
61 x 61 x 5cm
2005-09
$7,000
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 1
acrylic on wood with oil + pumice
16 x 16 x 6.5cm [closed]
2013
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 2
acrylic on wood
16.5 x 16.5 x 6cm [closed]
2013
$1,200 sold
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 4
acrylic on wood + metal with sulphur powder
16.5 x 16.5 x 6.5cm [closed]
2013
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 5
oil, acrylic on wood + metal
16 x 16 x 6cm [closed]
2013
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 7
acrylic on wood + metal
16.5 x 16.5 x 6cm [closed]
2014
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 8
acrylic on wood + metal
16.5 x 16.5 x 6cm [closed]
2018
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 10
acrylic on wood + metal
16.5 x 16.5 x 7cm [closed]
2015-18
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 12
acrylic on wood + metal
16 x 16 x 6cm [closed]
2018
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 14
acrylic on wood + metal
16 x 16 x 7cm [closed]
2018
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
octobox 17
acrylic on wood + metal
16.5 x 16.5 x 7cm [closed]
2019
$1,200
brian blanchflower artwork
monochrome [green]
acrylic on linen on plywood
25 x 17 x 2cm
2006
$1,200