We Often Forget_
Photo: Lee Welch
We Often Forget
24th July – 4th August 2020
Working over a period of 18 months, artist John Busher has often traded back and forth between painting and printmaking. In Shopping (Without Haste), 2019, a barely-there figure appears, shrouded or masked. Working in high-keyed grounds, Busher paints partly recognizable environments, housing estates, shop fronts, lanes, and alleyways. There is a sense of a world in flux, passing through, layered in a palimpsest of marks and gestures revealing additional narratives. The compositions are often charged with unreal distortions, dense pockets of activity; a growing sense of unease abounds. As with previous works, concerns regarding the body are evident. Anchored in particular settings, often left exposed to the elements, they appear to act as a receptor to the world they inhabit. Showing monotypes for the first time, Busher has foregrounded printmaking to echo concerns that are inherent in both mediums.
Relating these paintings and prints to contemporary life is often left ambiguous and open-ended. Accumulation of information is apparent in the works, beginning as acidic grounds, a sparing process of painterly invention makes its way to the surface, often appearing as barriers to our modes of perception. Looking through, whether it be a fence, narrow opening or window frame, is an opportunity to project a mishmash of visual information. Like an open drawer, Busher digs and searches beneath a layer of memory, waiting for something to bite. Monotypes are conceived through the same process, recurring imagery is repeated in small nuances of glowing colour, transparent form or figurative investigation. Filtering through, shaped by intuition, each successive layer acts as a test site, offering a new point of departure. There is a prevailing sense of pace, one that is often mirrored in how the eye and mind sift through an abundance of information in the contemporary age.
About the artist
John Busher (b. Wexford, 1976) graduated from NCAD with an MA Art in the Contemporary World in 2015, a Post Grad in 2008, and an Honours Degree in 1999. He has recently completed the Turps Correspondence Course at Turps Art School (London). Recent solo exhibitions include Jostle, Pallas Projects, Dublin (2017), Floorplan, NAG Gallery, Dublin (2015). Selected group shows include Cairde Visual, The Model, Sligo, (2019) Paper Cuts, Saatchi Gallery, London, Curated by Kristian Day, GIFC, 0-0 LA, Los Angeles, Beep Painting Biennial, elysium gallery, Swansea (2018), Impressions Biennial, CCAM, GMIT, Galway, And Creatures Dream... A New Language..., Wexford County Council & Wexford Arts Centre, Wexford (2017), Halftone, The Library Project, Dublin (2016 & 2019), Winter Open, RUA RED, Dublin, and Essays for the House of Memory, Ormston House, Limerick (2014). He was the recipient of the Living Arts Project residency in 2015, 2017, & 2019. (Wexford County Council & The Arts Council). He was the recipient of the Artlinks Bursary Award (2020 & 2018). Recent publications include Art Maze Magazine (Issue 6), curated by Kristian Day (London).