New York-based Australian artist Peter Daverington returns to ARC ONE with an exhibition of new paintings, titled Surface Zero.
A contemporary artist with a rare mastery of oil techniques, Peter Daverington’s practice centres on his unparalleled capacity to work across a wide range of pictorial languages and artistic styles. With a foundation in graffiti and street art, his oeuvre critically engages with legacies of Western art history from a contemporary context; seamlessly integrating a vast array of disparate images, styles and references in an aesthetic maximalism relevant to our time.
In Surface Zero, Daverington forces together opposing attitudes in art to consider the potential of images as zones of conflict. A clash of viewpoints, opinions, and perspectives plays out across his layered canvases as hard-edge abstraction, classical figuration and Romantic landscape painting are severely juxtaposed in a heady aesthetic mélange.
Surface Zero is a disaster point of explosive force. Landscapes by the great Hudson River School painter Albert Bierstadt, and figurative works by the Flemish Baroque artist Peter Paul Rubens, have been deftly appropriated, with the brushwork, colour, and technique reflecting the originals as closely as possible. Bright, geometric, hard-edge line work interrupts these representational paintings creating a tension within the pictorial space between formalism and figuration. For Daverington, this interlocking of clashing styles is “a reflection on twenty-first century disorientation,” it is “like looking at life from multiple viewpoints simultaneously – whether different points in history, different cultures, different perspectives and so on. I like the stark contrasts of life, the very natural struggle between viewpoints and opinions. The only way I can express this is by trying to compress a wide range of pictorial languages to capture the bewildering spectacles of being human and of life itself.”
Peter Daverington (b. 1974, Melbourne, Australia) has held more than sixty group and solo exhibitions in Australia, Europe, the Americas, and Asia since 2003. In 2006 Daverington completed an MFA at the Victorian College of the Arts where he received the prestigious KPMG tutorship to teach in the painting department. He has received two Australia Council for the Arts project grants, in 2005 and 2010 respectively; the John Coburn Emerging Artist Award in 2008, and the Rupert Bunny Fellowship in 2011 for his first moving image work. Solo exhibitions include Daverington does de Chirico, Susan Boutwell Gallery, Munich (2017); Before the Apocalypse, Shanghai Mass Art Centre, Shanghai (2016); Iconophilia, The Lodge Gallery, New York (2015); Lacuna, Chasm Gallery, Brooklyn, New York (2015); and Weltlandschaft (2016), Because Painting (2014), From the Future with Love (2013), and Poiesis (2011), all ARC ONE Gallery, Melbourne. Recent group exhibitions include Latent Content Analysis, The Lodge Gallery, New York (2017); The Oasis, Gitler_& Gallery, New York; Divine Abstraction, Justin Art House Museum, Melbourne (2016); Lurid Beauty: Australian Surrealism and its Echoes, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2015-16); The Garden, QUT Museum, Brisbane (2015); 100 Little Deaths, Bravin Lee Programs, New York (2013); Peekskill Project V, Hudson Valley Centre of Contemporary Art, Peekskill, New York (2013); and Currents 2012 & 2014 – Santa Fe International New Media Festival, Santa Fe, New Mexico. He has been shortlisted for numerous prestigious art awards including the Moran Prize (2018), the Archibald Prize and the Sulman Prize (2014 and 2013); the Fleurieu Art Prize, (2013); and the Geelong Contemporary Art Prize (2012). His work has been acquired by several major collections, including Artbank, KPMG, MacQuarie Bank, Geelong Gallery and Gippsland Art Gallery, as well as private collections throughout Australia and abroad.
Peter Daverington lives and works in New York.