Saint or sinner, what are we? The exhibition by Blakely voices thought provoking moral questions about religion, and its place in modern society. Having been forsaken by humanity, these angels are adrift and Blakely offers us the engaging premise of the ripple effect in heaven and its fallout on Earth. Through this exploration, Blakely ultimately shows us a reflection of ourselves - our human frailty and our own resilience.
While citing the great masters Caravaggio, Degas and Rembrandt as influences, Blakely has well and truly found his stamp in this allegorical yet captivating new body of work. Blakely’s unconventional representation of angels evokes compelling thoughts about faith, spiritual belief and religion’s place in modern day society. Elegant and alluring, the angels are no longer called upon for guidance and help. For most of us, burdened with daily cares and pleasures, these weary heavenly guardians have been rendered useless and have discovered alternative vices to bide their time.
Speaking of his artwork, Blakely said: “The Church has quite consistently failed to appeal to a younger audience. As is commonly reported, the younger generation is, in growing numbers, showing disenchantment with religion. This lack of belief provokes a wonderful opportunity to ask what the consequences could be for the universe if these ethereal guardians are not called upon as often as they used to be. What would happen if angels became redundant? These enquiries are explored in my new collection.”
The exhibition runs from Friday 1st May - Saturday 23rd May. A private view and artist appearance will take place on Wednesday 6th May 6pm -9pm. Please contact the gallery directly if you would like to be added to the guest list.