The preview went really well yesterday evening, I’m very grateful to all the people who came along and supported me. I’ll be here manning the show today and tomorrow so please drop by if you haven’t already, or if you’d like to hear Nick’s sound installation properly without all the chatting (there’s a preview clip on his blog: http://nicholasbrown.co.uk/blog/ or https://soundcloud.com/nicholasbrown/et-in-cinerem-reverteris).
Its pretty quiet in here today, I’m just sitting with the paintings and the sound and considering how it all relates. The title of the show – In Arcady – is a reference to the famous ‘Et in Arcadia Ego’, a painting by Poussin that hangs in the Louvre (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Et_in_Arcadia_ego). The painting depicts shepherds sitting around a tomb, reading the inscription. The usual interpretation of the painting of the tomb with its title is ‘Even here, in arcadia [a rural utopia], I [death] exist’. Its a comment on the inevitable presence of death, even in the most frivolous idilic setting.
I was pleased, given the inspiration for the title of my show, that when I told people I felt my paintings had a slightly sinister edge, they said they hadn’t picked up on that, but then they went round again and came back to me saying they couldn’t see it before, but now they saw it in all of them! Just how it should be, since if you cannot forget the ever presence of the shadow of death you can never be truly merry and frivolous, which is how I wanted the occasion of my private view to be.