BEERS London is thrilled to present My Thousand Sounds, the third solo exhibition at the gallery by esteemed Australian painter Adam Lee. The title, borrowed from Christian Wiman’s 2008 poem, “A Small Prayer in a Hard Wind“, suggests the notion of a divine presence amidst human fragility.
In his newest paintings, Lee continues his ongoing fascination with painting as a form of private pilgrimage. For Lee, the process of painting can be perceived as a metonym for a type of spiritual voyage. His intention is that the viewer might perceive these paintings as personal votive objects linking the familiar terrains of memory, family, and loss, with that of an uncanny yet unseen sense of corporeal transcendence. In many ways the works function as relic-like objects that house much greater sublime ideas.
About the Artist
Adam Lee works from his studio in the hills of the Macedon Ranges, Victoria, Australia, and he works mostly with traditional painting and drawing materials. His work references a wide range of sources including historical and colonial photography, biblical narratives, natural history, and most recently seem to embody more imagined or fantastical sources, investigating aspects of the human condition in relation to ideas of temporal and supernatural worlds. There is a sort of unsettling stillness to Lee’s work, a type of peaceful disquietude, where figures are situated in strange, unearthly spaces seem to tend to their own spiritual procession. As his practice has moved from more traditional ‘landscape’ painting to a practice that incorporates more emotive, poetic and narrative qualities, the work seems laboured upon with an almost religious reverence – somewhere between RB Kitaj and Rothko, oddly enough. There is a stylization of all Lee’s forms – where the figures become almost crystallized – and the viewer senses the creative and critical processes Lee undergoes to create his distinct bodies of work. From hunters, to shamanism, to fatherhood, Lee’s themes result in an informative nucleus from which he works prolifically to create large paintings and drawings that respond to a central theme. As viewers, we become complicit to the world he creates.
Exhibition dates: October 19 - November 23, 2019