DAVID BARNES

www.saatchiart.com/davidjbarnes                    

Before joining the postgraduate printmaking course at FBAUP I was working mainly in collage, layering mesh and fabrics. I have a background in installation and geometry and have always been interested in the structures and patterns that lie behind our perception of the world.

Learning the techniques and processes behind printmaking has enabled my work to grow within the vocabulary and long tradition of etching and printing. By making collages the artist uses ready made printed images and materials to create a piece of work, whereas through the act of printing the artist creates images that can come more easily from pure imagination.

I am drawn to the paradox between printing as a way of making multiple images and the more permanent physical process of etching on to a metal plate. An unprinted plate can lay dormant but still contain the necessary information or data to reproduce a fresh series of prints when reactivated. An image can be reworked or manipulated while still coming from the same original source.

To my mind there is an aspect of freezing time to many prints, a way of travelling back towards an essence.

In the works selected for this exhibition I was interested in alchemy, the transformation of materials and ideas towards a new end.  The process of polishing, covering and using acids to etch into a metal plate is in itself a slightly magical process of transformation.

I chose a print by Callot as starting point to deconstruct. I was struck by the contrast between the pastoral beauty of the scenery and settings that are the backdrop to a series of atrocities and violence. To the modern eye the villages and countryside of Callot are now seen as idylls, places to escape to. The violence and fighting that happens seems so long ago and far removed that it may almost be seen as theatre. By separating the human element from the scene I wanted to explore the way the different elements are seen when extracted from one another.

The other, more abstract, work is involved with early prints about change and creation itself.  I am looking to create prints that seem almost primordial. Images of abstract energy or the interplay between geometric elements and nature.

Education:

Postgraduate course printmaking FBAUP

Masters degree Prince’s School of Art London

BA hons Fine Art Cardiff

Exhibitions:

Gallery Hostel Miguel Bombarda 2016 Porto

National Building Museum Washington DC 2007

St. ThomasStudios Wells 2007 Somerset arts weeks exhibitions

Shakespeare’s Globe 2005 London Group exhibition and workshops

Charlotte rd. Galleries 2003-4 London

Galleria Madre Art 2000 Madragoa, Lisboa

Brighton artists gallery 1999 Brighton Group.

Newton Aards town hall 1998 Belfast Solo Installation show.

Proposition gallery 1997 Belfast Solo installation show.

Mill Lane Gallery 1997 Cardiff Created a new artist’s space with group sculpture show.

Events:

Nigeria 2005-2008

I helped run a series of 4 workshops, working with young Nigerian artists and craftsmen and women from Kano region. In partnership with Kano polytechnic we held a series of exhibitions culminating in a large group show at the Terra Kulture Gallery in Lagos.

Victoria &Albert museum 2006 London, Workshops