Le singe qui transpire

© Courtesy of Jordy Kerwick, Humberto Poblete-Bustamante and cadet capela
© Credits photo: Thomas Marroni

Jordy Kerwick, Humberto Poblete-Bustamante

June 11 — July 7, 2021

Montpellier, FR

Painting is at the heart of this exhibition, which jointly presents the works of Australian Jordy Kerwick and Chilean Humberto Poblete-Bustamante.

Colour and material are the main tools with which Jordy Kerwick composes his scenes inspired by everyday life but incorporating animals, often ferocious, and many other imaginary elements. The artist deconstructs figurative subjects to their rawest dimension, revealing “a subject in its most sincere state”. A wild force emanates from his compositions whose bold aura is encouraged by a raw line and explosive colours. In this two-dimensional space, accentuated by the fact that Kerwick flattens the perspective, different techniques are mixed and layered, from acrylic paint to oil as well as spray paint or collage, offering an abundance of textures. The central subject is frequently enriched with figurative pictorial elements that give the works a deeper, sometimes complementary, sometimes more ambivalent reading. The eye wanders between unambiguous figuration and meticulously precise details.

Humberto Poblete-Bustamante gets rid of any limitation that a particular subject might suggest, thus navigating in the purest dimension of painting. The surface of the canvas is occupied by flat areas that take on various forms, without precise contours. In no way do these forms attempt to be familiar or geometric, they are not recognisable. They are the materialization of the artist’s flashes of inspiration, guided by the act of painting. In the course of the creative process, the forms evolve and transform, one layer of paint replaced by another. The raw and rapid brushstrokes emphasise the instantaneous and dynamic expression of action. The works in this series, mostly in oil, are framed by the fluorescently coloured undercoats of acrylic. In Poblete-Bustamante’s paintings, there is no error: accident and chance, facilitated by the artist’s gesture, are an integral part of the work. It is an ode to painting.

Kerwick and Poblete-Bustamante are brought together in an exhibition whose title, Le singe qui transpire (The Sweating Monkey), evokes the playful yet intense aspect of both artists’ work. Both allow themselves to be guided by the physicality of the paint, the colours and the unexpected. This free and instinctive improvisation creates lively works that reflect the ever-changing aspect of life. Spontaneous and unfiltered, like the title of the exhibition, the works of Kerwick and Poblete-Bustamante invite us to dare to lose ourselves in the tangible world of painting.

Boris Bergmann