Exhibition

Imogen Allen | Young Penwith Artist 2024

Opening: 26 Jul 2024, 17:30 - 19:30

26 Jul 2024 – 26 Aug 2024

Regular hours

Friday
10:00 – 17:00
Saturday
10:00 – 17:00
Monday
10:00 – 17:00
Tuesday
10:00 – 17:00
Wednesday
10:00 – 17:00
Thursday
10:00 – 17:00

Free admission

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Penwith Gallery

St Ives
England, United Kingdom

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  • St Ives Bus Station
  • St Ives Train Station
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About

'Lumen' is defined as a unit for measuring the amount of light something produces. This new group of works by Imogen Allen have the inner light of the natural world at their core. Through painting the intricate structures of lichens, fungi and flowers, Allen’s new series offers a profound interconnection between one's inner being and the more-than-human world. Her philosophy is rooted in the understanding that Earth is a symbiotic ecosystem, with humans both descending from and being intimately entwined with natural forms we perceive. Her luminous hues and sensitive touch invites viewers to explore this intrinsic unity. Moving in and out of focus, her paintings embrace our deep relationship with the wild and the ineffable light that flows through all living things.

Imogen Allen is a painter whose work explores the energetic terrain of our conscious and subconscious experience through the physical language of colour, shape and gesture. Her paintings are luminous, meditative portals of reflection, which embrace the physicality of our earth as a pathway to the spiritual, transcendental experience.

Having grown up near Zennor, South West Cornwall, on the edge of a moorland of lichen blanketed standing stones and ethereal grasses, Allen sees the human relationship to wildness, as central to the architecture of our being. Her work is informed deeply by this profound connection to the voices of the natural world; the characteristics of plants, fungi and the elements constantly inform the direction of her paintings. Imogen intends each work to possess its own distinct personality and explore its own painterly terrain, like each organism within the ecosystem. The thread which unifies her work is something ineffable, but can be felt through characteristics of sensitive touch, vivid colour and shifting depth that permeate her canvases.

Allen’s work puts the organic experiential at its forefront, commanding the physiological reflection of the viewer through the subtle push and pull between the definable and the non-definable. Her works offer questions, not answers, and instead of telling a narrative for us to unpick, they are intended as vessels from which we can feel from.

We simply cannot wait to see the wonder that Imogen Allen will create for her solo show with us in our studio gallery 26th July – 24th August 2024.

Imogen Allen (b. 1997) was born and raised in the far west of Cornwall between the moorlands and coast of Penwith. Allen gained a first class honours degree in Fine Art: Painting from Camberwell College of Arts in 2020. She continued to live and work in London up until June 2023, when she decided to move back to Cornwall to focus more on allowing direct experiences within the elements and with the flora of Cornwall to inform her painting.

Since graduating, Allen has debuted her work with a solo exhibition in London (2021) and been included in a duo-exhibition in Los Angles (2022). Last year, Allen visited the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest for a one month residency. During this time she connected to the deep ecological purpose of her work, which aims to reconnect people to the profound feelings of awe, mystery and the ‘ineffable’ feelings that arise in us when with plants and in nature. Such sensitivities are rooted in Allen’s upbringing and connection to the West Penwith landscape that she grew up on.

Additionally in 2023, Allen has exhibited in group shows in London, such as The Arusha Gallery and was selected for the ARC stay open call show in Painswick. Allen’s work has been placed in international collections.

In March 2024, Imogen exhibited in a group show at Studio West Gallery in London, based on theories of eco-feminist writer Donna Haraway.

The Young Penwith Artist programme was created in 2022 to run annually to support young artists based in Cornwall, by providing the artists with a funded exhibition in our studio gallery during our Associates Summer Exhibition. It’s a fantastic opportunity for artists aged 35 and under to submit work and engage with the gallery as a professional artist to create their own show. The exhibition is completely funded by the Penwith Society of Arts, with the goal of the programme to create stronger connections with younger artists based in Cornwall.

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Imogen Allen

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