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ArchiveExhibition

Conrad Jon Godly : NEVERTHELESS

18 Nov 2020–9 Jan 2021

Overview

The exhibition represents a return to Godly’s favourite subject matter: the awe, terror, beauty, and suspense of the mountains. Godly has titled this exhibition in defiance of those who seek to pigeonhole him; yes, he has painted many mountains before, nevertheless, not one is the same, and this show presents a refined and powerful rendition of these phenomenal gifts of nature. Godly’s unique style is caught between abstraction and representation. His paintings are never illustrationsof specific mountains, instead his paintings are the product of his memory. In this way, Godly seeks to capture the emotional relationship that he has with them, creatingpaintings with a tangible quality; the ridges are deeply felt, the drops are sheer, the paint falls from the canvas.Godly breaks the boundary between object and viewer, letting the paintings burst into the physical space of the gallery.From afar, the paintings appear photographic, with their realistic depictions of reflections on pure white snow. This is because of the 17 years Godly spent as a photographer before turning to the brush, which has gifted him an innate knowledge of light and composition. As a result, he gives light priority in his painting, masterfully manipulating the paint to give the impression of blinding sunlight or total darkness. Godly’s understanding of nature’s essence allows him to create a narrative that becomes progressively darker in this exhibition. Firstly, there are his paintings of light. These canvases are his most photographic, flooded with blue and white; light emanates from the pictorial plane – focusing on hope. Secondly, there are the canvases concerned with mist. These works deal mostly in more pastoral greens and greys, split by a ravine that rushes through the centre. Finally, in his night paintings Godly revels in the theatrical nature of the mountains, lacing the thick paint with fear and danger.


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