Lot 12 - Harriet Gillett - Birdcage
Oil and spray paint on paper
Signed on Verso
This auction is raising proceeds for The Hepatitis C Trust
Curated by Vittoria Beltrame
Harriet Gillett (b.1995 East Yorkshire) is an artist living and working in London. Responding to an increasingly digitalised world where images and time periods merge and appear in one seemingly eternal present, Harriet Gillett hopes to slow down these increasingly fast-paced encounters into images of reverie.
Taking reference from the emotionally charged vibrancy of post-Impressionism and the devotional nature of Western religious formats, her combination of traditional subjects with contemporary materials enables her to tread a line between multiple perspectives and time periods.
She works from sketches made in the moment, usually of friends at pubs and live gigs, later attempting to capture the memory of these communities and atmospheres within her paintings. Working predominantly with oil and spray paint, she layers thin veils of colour over a warm fluorescent spray paint ground that is reminiscent of the gold within icon paintings and a “rose-tinted” lens. This enables the work to position itself between the past and present, the traditional and the contemporary, both in terms of its imagery and its materiality.
Paint operates as a metaphor for both instability and potential transformation, allowing for a fluidity of form, and to blur the line between the abstract and figurative, the experienced and imagined.
She repeats the same imagery across different scales, which in doing so visually demonstrates a shift in perspective. The paintings become dreamlike and lyrical explorations of memory; moving between intimate snapshots that evoke something more personal and scaled-up sketchbook pages that take on a cinematic, more universal quality. She often draws inspiration from literature or song lyrics, incorporating them into the title or sides of the painting, to suggest another layer of meaning.
She received her MA in Fine Art at City and Guilds art school in 2022 after studying a BA in English Literature at Edinburgh University (2017).
Recent exhibitions include group shows at Brooke Benington, Roman Road, Delphian x Saatchi and duos with Soho Revue and New Normal Projects. She was shortlisted for the Ingram prize in 2020 and is one of the 2023 New Contemporaries. In 2024 she will undertake the Palazzo Monti Residency.
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