Declan Jenkins: I Sing Of Armoires... at Sims Reed Gallery


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Sims Reed Gallery is pleased to announce that its autumn schedule kicks off with British contemporary artist Declan Jenkins' first solo exhibition, I sing of armoires..., taking place from 6 - 29 September 2017. Jenkins, known primarily for his woodcut prints and performative poems, is showcasing an exciting new series of a dozen monumental hand-coloured woodcuts. The exploration of the human figure, self-consciousness and our negotiation with space and figures has always been a central concern in Jenkins work. The artist's new series explores the human body in relation to space within contemporary life, whilst pushing the limits of the medium. The exhibition's title refers to a quote from Virgil's The Aeneid, 'I sing of arms..', and features human figures enclosed in chambers mimicking furniture, edged with geometric patterns inspired by marquetry, tribal art and the rhythms of Aboriginal painting. This is clearly depicted in his Discomfort Cabinet Series, which conveys unequal power relations, seen through the contrasting positions the figures occupy within cramped spaces. The claustrophobic poverty of space reflects the increasingly limited space of 21st-century life, whilst illustrating the capacity of the decorative to enclose and imprison. His works' boldness and scale imbues them a heightened physicality, whilst the shadows of the physical entities appear caught between two and three dimensions. The prints' mould-like appearance also suggests that they are liminal structures, situated between sculpture and printmaking. This object-like quality is enhanced by the woodblock's shape, mimicking the image and taking on the physical appearance of its referent. The woodblock is a site for performative power, registering marks and gestures of a drawing process that excavates raw and hewn forms. The works simultaneously project the artist's interior life, resulting in an extrusion of feeling and concept into the world. All works in the exhibition are available to purchase. Price points start from £1,200 and most of the prints are available in unique variants from an edition of five. The exhibition is accompanied by an e-catalogue, in which Eileen Cooper OBE RA, contemporary painter, printmaker and former Keeper of the Royal Academy, discusses her former student's practice. Catherine Daunt, the Hamish Parker Curator of Modern and Contemporary Graphic Art at the British Museum will introduce Declan Jenkins at the private view on 5 September 2017.

Venue Details & Map

Sims Reed Gallery

43 Duke Street
St. James's
+44 (0)20 7930 5566
Public transport:
Green Park, Underground

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