Tim Ellis’ most recent work combines his interest in aesthetic art movements with his love of organic and geometric patterns to form hybrid artworks that map spaces and represent abstract diagrams and journeys. Following on from the earliest cartographers who looked to the sky rather than the earth for their starting points, Ellis follows in a rich tradition of creating maps that are rich with undiscernible abstract codes and symbols.
‘My drawings are a way of mapping or charting territories on paper and creating abstract worlds of pattern and geometry that move the eye around the surface and a long a journey’.
Maps have always held a fascination to the artist because they allow you to travel without leaving a space. It is possible to conjure your own stories or imagine the landscape as you travel through a map. The artist translates these ideas to handmade paper, each sheet in-bedded with fragments and matter from locations all around the world and splices these against exotic block printed papers, rich with patterned information, each specific to a locality. Ellis Fuses together and layers the information, treating each work as a frame within a frame, blending different compositions and spaces together. Each piece is built up of layers of information ranging from cryptic diagrams, bloc printed patterns, abstract codes and symbols all formed by the artist making sense of both the physical and virtual environment surrounding him. The sculptures and relief works are extensions of this idea and can be seen as 3 dimensional maps, each piece having its own clearly defined terroir with gullies, valleys and pitfalls, filled with contradictory information and changing patterns depending on different viewing point.
Research has always been an important factor in the development and Ellis sights ‘The Pattern and Decoration Movement’, ‘The Arts and Crafts’,’ Japanese block prints and wallpaper design as integral to the work, along with Chinese Suzhou windows, that frame ornate landscapes with abstract and symbolic patterns. The artist has always been keen to reboot and investigate older ideas and aesthetics, reordering and splicing different genres together to create hybrid works. In essence the artist studio is a melting pot of cultures and perhaps reflects the exchanges in knowledge over the centuries that crossed physical and metaphorical boundaries.