The hills are shadows, and they flow
From form to form, and nothing stands;
They melt like mist, the solid lands,
Like clouds they shape themselves and go.
- Alfred Lord Tennyson, excerpt from ‘In Memoriam’
Taking their exhibition title from part of a Tennyson poem, the collaborative partnership of Canada based artists Jim Holyoak and Matt Shane immediately make a statement, showing the poetic and mysterious side of their drawing practice. Working together to produce large scale pieces, Jim and Matt create worlds within worlds where beached whales grow cities from their backs and creatures lurk in the lush undergrowth.
Their immersive drawing installations amalgamate notions of studio, gallery and domestic space. They are made in a marathon fashion, expanding across entire walls over the course of an exhibition. The artists' sketch animals (real, imagined and extinct), landforms and architecture, and then gradually flesh out metamorphic landscapes with pencils, inky brooms, brushes, stencils, spritzers and atomizers. They crawl on drop sheets, climb ladders and respond to each other’s marks, oscillating between techniques of chance and intention. The finished drawings represent a meandering conversation and a shared dream world between two traveling companions.
This exhibition marks the twentieth collaboration between Jim and Matt and showcases sections of three of their large installations as well as correspondence art, ephemera and a selection of small-scale works. They will also be on site creating a new drawing that will grow from the other exhibition pieces and weave its way across 12 meters of the gallery space.
Jim and Matt will be in residence in the gallery during the first 5 weeks of the exhibition. Drop by between 3pm – 5pm, Tuesday – Saturday, from 24 September – 26 October, to meet them and see them at work.
Image: Quagmire (detail), Ja Natuurlijk, Jim Holyoak and Matt Shane