Mixing media into metaphor
METAPHORS Dame St Gallery, Dame St, Dublin 2 Sep 3-14 Daily 11am-8pm 087-2887261
MagicLogic, Jordi Forniés’s vivid exhibition in the Dame St gallery last year, was full of the colours of his native Barcelona. The artist, who is based in Dublin, paints in a style that recalls other Catalonian artists – Gaudi, Miró, Tàpies – but is very much his own.
It is partly his background as a chemist that gives Forniés’s work its distinctive depth, texture and colour. He often makes his own pigments and uses an unusual mixture of old and new materials, from gold and copper leaf and papyrus to latex and plastic.
There is a new subtlety of both colour and form in these recent paintings, but the artist’s openness and his willingness to document his emotional experiences on canvas is still evident. An unexpected side-track on life’s path is evoked in oxidised slabs in Here to There (above), the joys of a brief love affair mapped out in seven blocks of indigo and pearl in Wonderful Week.
His life in Ireland has influenced this new work. The view of the sea from his windows inspired the stormy green and blue of Broken Silence and the changing Irish weather is also captured – this time playfully – in Grian na hÉireann. But Forniés’s homeland is also still a source of inspiration, as can be seen from the large study The Secret Promise, which captures the grizzled beauty of an ancient olive tree.