Clarke’s solo exhibition will run in conjunction with A Strong Sweet Smell of Incense, a group exhibition curated by Clarke at 6 Burlington Gardens celebrating the seminalSwinging London art dealer who was both a friend and early supporter of Clarke. Pace will publish two catalogues to accompany the respective exhibitions.
For more than four decades, Clarke has pioneered new directions in stained glass, extending his practice to painting sculpture and mosaics. Architecturally, Clarke has collaborated with figures such as Norman Foster, Zaha Hadid, I.M Pei and Renzo Piano. Clarke developed his interest in glass out of exposure to British Gothic cathedrals during his childhood in northern England. Although he maintains a classical knowledge of the medium, he has developed it beyond its largely religious siting. Clarke has filtered his understanding of stained glass’s history and technique through a contemporary canon, employing the delicate medium to make artworks in the non-ecclesiastical traditions of Pop Art and abstraction.
“After nearly four decades of intense production in painting, sculpture, and stained glass, Clarke is not an easy artist to absorb, let alone to classify. If there were an artist capable of synthesizing space, time, and light, ranging from his intimate “drawings in the air” on black sugar paper to his rigorous in-depth architectonic achievements, he could be none other than Brian Clarke.” Robert C. Morgan, Between Extremities catalogue, Pace Gallery NY, 2013.
In recognition of the significance of architecture and in situ work in his practice, Clarke will install a new stained-glass window specifically designed for the Lexington Street gallery.
The selection of paintings also demonstrates the interaction between media in the artist’s oeuvre. Paintings frequently function as the genesis of Clarke’s stained glass works, yet the distinction between the opacity of painting versus the site-specific translucency of the glass, reveals his sensitivity to colour and material.
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