MICHAEL ADAMSON

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"A new view toward nature seems to be on the minds of many contemporary artists. It is no wonder given the dire forecast predicted by leading scientists. Most recently Peter Doig exhibited a new suite of paintings at Michael Werner in New York. His works featured strange figures set in eerie landscapes and interiors. Katherine Bradford displayed a new series of paintings at Canada Gallery in NYC. Her show was titled, "Fear of Waves", and depicted divers and swimmers adrift at sea. At first glance, they might seem unlikely bedfellows for Adamson. Doig and Bradford create a kind of magic realism marked by decorative sensibilities and motifs featuring oceans and mountains. Doig got his start in Canada, Bradford in Maine. The three painters have something in common – a sort of homely, northern folk quality in their image making. Adamson has an affinity for rough-shod surfaces. Subtle nods to the natural world creep into each work. These aren't pretty paintings, but the sensation and atmosphere of the subject matter is palpable."

Excerpt from upcoming monograph, Open Road, this 2016 text is by Jason Stopa, a NYC based artist and contributing writer to Art in America, The Brooklyn Rail and Whitewall Magazine.

"I want to make beautiful things" - the paintings were not so much self indulgent as they were ecstatically pursued, encyclopedic essays in the expressive possibilities of the language of paint.

And these possibilities-as wrangled into the paintings by an artists for whom Bonnard, Manet, Monet, Nicholas de Stael and Hans Hofmann ar e just as relevant and just as useful in the daily practice of painting as is the inevitable Gerhard Richter-were now being tumbled into the gaping hopper of the new works with a gleeful abandon that either furrows your brow or lifts your heart.

But "gleeful abandon" is not right. Or at least "abandon" isn't. In overview, the paintings teem with pigment joy. You end up marveling at the cunning way Adamson's trowellings and eddyings of paint coalesce, in a painting like Shepherd's Cove, for example, into inescapable suggestions of landscape. In the end, however, you can have your landscape associations and deny them too. For the paintings almost inevitably break up into thousands of heady passages of pure paint-handling where, if you take them moment by moment, you free your self, dab by dab, swipe by swipe, into an engagement with febrile, unapologetic aggregation of painting acts. The result is a deep healing calm. As William Blake once remarked about mastery, whereas "Damn braces", so "Bless Relaxes"

Gary Michael Dault, Canadian Art, Spring 2004

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Swedish Show
Michael Adamson
Couture Galleri
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New Book
Michael Adamson
Open Road
Second Volume in the Series
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UK Show
Michael Adamson
Thompson's Gallery
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