Rhue Art

Ian Williams Statement


Exhibition of New installations

11 March to 13 April 2017

For many years I have been fascinated by the way we communicate; with others, with our surroundings and with ourselves. Initially my interest was in spoken language and the use of puns, homophones and idiom to create humour, but as I developed an interest in painting I began to ask questions about the nature of visual experience and how we try to communicate that. Do we use words to describe our experience to ourselves? Do we need to? Is that limiting? How do we share these experiences with others?

In the context of the illusions of visual art, what is necessary to sustain the illusion? How much can be taken away before the illusion fails to communicate? And can the same communication take place through different illusions?

The pieces in this exhibition do not answer those questions but mark stages in my exploration of them. Some are straightforward, some refer to more or less well-known sayings, some contain references to the famous work of others and some allow a period of reflection!

Many artists, writers and philosophers have recognised and addressed these issues: knowledge of their work might help or might just add to the confusion.

The work in this exhibition is light hearted and I hope it will cause some amusement so that you leave smiling even if puzzled.

I wish to thank John McGeogh for his very considerable help writing the programmes for the video loop and Neon Creations in Bolton for construction of the neon work.

I have had an interesting and varied life, most of which is not relevant to this exhibition! It is only during the last five years that I have been painting and even more recently that I have been making pieces that might be called conceptual art. I am grateful to Eleanor and Peter White for periodic advice and I owe a great debt to tutors at Leith School of Art. James Hawkins has given generously of his time and advice over the years and especially, along with Flick, in connection with the more recent venture into conceptual art. Time spent on the distant learning course run by Jemma Derbyshire was also of great value in developing my understanding and technique. When I can find room in my studio I still enjoy the challenge of still life painting and hope to continue to exasperate tutors and friends as I pursue this and further exploration of conceptual work.