Josh O’Rourke & Emily Hartley-Skudder ACTUAL / DESCRIBED

Josh O’Rourke & Emily Hartley-Skudder
Actual / Described
21 August – 8 September 2012

  

Josh O’Rourke

Josh O’Rourke’s new body of work pays homage to the formal properties of painting. Within each of the works the paint becomes the subject matter through close attention to the behavioural properties of the medium including colour and form, and its ability to act in a three dimensional manner. The surfaces are rich and luminous, the artist’s aim is to create works which are “visually satisfying and psychologically engaging.”[i] Unarguably modern in their clean lines and pared back composition they are simultaneously in that they reference the formal abstraction of Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko.

[1] In conversation with the artist, Josh O’Rourke, August 2012.

WORKS BY JOSH O’ROURKE

1. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #028 (2011)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

2. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #027 (2011)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

3. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #026 (2011)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

8. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #036 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

9. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #035 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

10. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #034 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

11. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #037 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

12. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #030 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

13. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #032 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

14. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #039 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

15. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #031 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

18. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #023 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

19. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #041 (2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400

20. Josh O’Rourke
Untitled #042(2012)
acrylic on board
250x590mm
$400


FOR WORKS BY EMILY HARTLEY-SKUDDER Click here

Josh O’Rourke’s work presents the pure and reduced form of colour which emancipates the human psyche. Referencing the New York colour field painters of the 1940s and ‘50s, such as Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko, O’Rourke’s pure abstractions do not disregard all narrative as Newman intended; instead O’Rourke’s central ‘zips’ which are “fired with the spark of life”, similar to Newman’s work, emanate energy and layers and shades of the beautiful subconscious, and they recall narratives.

Unmistakably, O’Rourke’s new body of work, through their colours and linear details, reference the nostalgia of summertime recreation.  Representative of the long boards ridden, seen and recalled from the 1950- 1960s American surf culture, the physicality of O’Rourke’s works place them somewhere between a painting and a sculpture. Physically referencing surfboards with their flat surface, elongated shape, and their smooth rounded edges; the rich and luminescent colours and repetitive linearity also reference long boards. O’Rourke’s nostalgia encourages a warm emotional response from the viewer and dually invites personal revelation in return for optical admiration.

Text by Petrena Fishburn, Aug 2012

JOSH O’ROURKE: BIO-SKETCH

Josh O’Rourke graduated in 2010 from the Canterbury University School of Fine Arts, then completed his Honours Degree in Fine Arts in 2011, majoring in painting. Josh was selected for the New Zealand Painting and Printmaking Awards of 2012 in Hamilton.  He has participated in both solo and group exhibitions at the SoFA Gallery since 2009: including Halcyon Days, Light, Skub Salon, Young Hunter. O’Rourke was chosen to exhibit in the Select Awards at the University of Canterbury in both 2010 and 2011, receiving an award in 2011. His work featured in the Australian publication The Art Park Journal (2012). Additionally, he has been the recipient of several awards including the University of Canterbury, College of Arts’ Honours Scholarship in 2011, the Sawtell-Turner Prize in Painting (2011), and the University Prize in Creative Arts (2011).

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