• Hero

    Jonathan Gabb: Prime Titanium 4 (detail)

Art

New show opening today celebrates 3D painting and proves that Jonathan certainly has the gift of the Gabb

Posted by Rob Alderson,

When is a painting not a painting? When it’s the work of Jonathan Gabb, a South London based artist who creates extraordinary 3D pieces by mixing PVA glue and acrylic paint to produce his wonderfully colourful work. At first glance it appears to be pretty playful, which it is, but there’s also a real bedrock of theory behind his pieces and his references range from rococo architecture to Art Nouveau to Damien Hirst and Wayne Thiebaud.

Jonathan’s solo show System opens today at London’s WW Gallery and came about after he won the inaugural SOLO award, part of the prize for which included a three month residency to make site-specific works for the gallery. HIs longstanding interest in toying with the painting process – and with viewers’ expectations – developed while he was art school and sprung from a desire to “make reference to the act of painting in the works.”

He says: "I want to stretch the material value of paint in a 3D form in a way which transforms it into something else – the paint is freed from a fixed surface and can be viewed as an object.  

“Audiences have a greater understanding about art now and I want to show something that not only has a lot of thought put into it, but which is also enjoyable to look at. I think there is something very authoritative about the traditional method of painting, and I think that ties in with people’s expectations. With these works people engage with the material nature of the medium, more than the colour, in a way in which they usually wouldn’t with traditional painting.”

System runs until February 2.

  • Gabb_-jonathan-02-gum-seven_-acrylic-paint-_-mixed-media_-w200-x-h200-x-d189-cm-(2011)

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • P1013640_adjusted-copy

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • Parsing_-prussian-blue-_-white

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • Gabb_-jonathan-04-uv_-acrylic-paint-_-mixed-media_-w200cm-x-h200cm-x-d110cm-(2011)

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • Gabb_-jonathan-03-prussian-blue-_-titanium-white-painting_-acrylic-paint-_-mixed-media_--w150-x-h250cm-x-d80cm-(2011)

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • Gabb_-jonathan-01-chameleon-mars-black-_-cadium-yellow_--acrylic-paint-_-mixed-media_-w290-x-h379-x-d260-cm-(2012)-(1)

    Jonathan Gabb: System installation shot

  • Prime-titanium--4

    Jonathan Gabb: Prime Titanium 4

Ra

Posted by Rob Alderson

Editor-in-Chief Rob oversees editorial across all three It’s Nice That platforms; online, print and events. He has a background in newspaper journalism and a particular interest in art, advertising and photography. He is the main host of the Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Art View Archive

  1. Menutnutnut-drawing-4-int

    Me nut nut nut was one of Jason Murphy’s daughter’s first utterances, and is now the name for his drawings of awkward stories of fear and incompetence. Inspired by the physical comedy of The Young Ones and The Ren & Stimpy Show, Jason’s drawings rely on comic intuition and references to real-life moments, like dropping a potato on his cat.

  2. Seamus_murhpy_pj-harvey_-recording-in-progress_-2015.-an-artangel-commission.-_1_int

    While we wait to take our turn to become a sort of strangely sanctioned voyeur as PJ Harvey records her ninth album, thinking about what’s ahead feels peculiar. Essentially, we’re going to see PJ (Polly Jean) Harvey, her band, producers Flood and John Parish, a photographer and two engineers making an album in a Something & Son-designed box, formed of glass that allows visitors to see in, while the musicians can’t see out.

  3. Atelierbingo-list-int

    Up to the point when I opened Atelier Bingo’s new zine Wogoo Zoogi I’d never wondered what two aliens in heated conversation might look like. Having had a read I can now confirm that the answer is “they are speaking, singing very strangely, and they have a hair on their tongues." The newest bout of work from French illustration and surface design duo Adèle Favreau and Maxime Prou is a wonderful celebration of playful, dynamic, abstract art; blending shapes, colours and patterns in a glorious puddle of chaos thinly disguised as alien chat. In fact, it’s everything we’ve been led to expect from the pair, who we’ve dolloped praise on in the past.

  4. Faigahmed-carpets-list-2-int

    Faig Ahmed is an Azerbaijani artist doing remarkable things with carpets. He takes traditional Azerbaijani rugs – enormous, beautiful intricate creations – un-weaves them, and reconstructs them to create new patterns and shapes, subverting traditional usage of rugs as domestic objects to be walked all over, and rejuvenating them with optical illusions and techniques reminiscent of contemporary internet art. 

  5. Slavs_tatars-loveletters-home-int

    The work of Slavs & Tatars is awash with unlikely cultural references, balloons, archives and carpets. Identifying “the area east of the former Berlin Wall and west of the Great Wall of China” as the focus of their work, their projects are generous, engaging and genre-crossing. Starting as a reading group before shifting into making their own work, Slavs & Tatars have recently been working on a continuation of their Long Legged Linguistics project, a multi-faceted study of language as a source of emancipation. The somewhat secretive collective were kind enough to tell us more about this and their “bazaar” approach to making work.

  6. Davidbatchelor-october-13-int

    If you go down to the Whitechapel Gallery anytime between now and early April you’ll be sure to come across a huge breadth of work chronicling the adventures of the black square, from 1915 all the way up to the present day. It’s fairly monochromatic, as you might expect. Upstairs, however, things get drastically more colourful – especially once you come to David Batchelor’s specially “disrupted” issue of October, one of the most respected art journals out there, first published in 1976 and edited by esteemed writers Michel Foucault, Richard Foreman and Noël Burch.

  7. Alexdacorte-easternsport-1-int

    Perennial student artist Alex Da Corte has qualifications, residencies and awards coming up to his eyeballs having studied Film, Animation and Fine Arts at New York’s School of Visual Arts, Printmaking and Fine Arts at The University of the Arts, Philadelphia and then a cheeky MFA in Sculpture at Yale. Busy guy!

  8. Duane_hanson_-_karma3

    Karma Books have just published a catalogue of Duane Hanson’s post-humous exhibition Flea Market Lady. Shown at New York’s Gagosian Gallery, Duane’s flea market ladies are taken from real-life characters and cast in bronze. An incredible feat of observation and skill, his work captures the character of his models and creates a very real atmosphere of flea-ing. Karma have kindly let us publish an extract from the imaginary conversation Maurizio Cattelan has with the artist in the foreword to the book:

  9. Hdl5_copy

    Hubert de Lartigue paints photo-realistic portraits that “serve the beauty” of his models, and his muse. He considers “emotion and soul” the most important part of a painting and spoke to us about his working process, inspiration and the impact of his muse, Octavie.

  10. Main_10.00.34

    If I won the lottery I’d open a gallery, and when I opened my gallery I’d totally rip off everything that David Kordansky Gallery does. From the big stuff like the very well-curated, cool list of artists they represent, to the impeccable printed matter they produce, to the matter of their easily navigable and well designed website – these guys are celebrating people’s work in the best way possible.

  11. List

    For all its simplicity – the limited use of colour, the seemingly straightforward shapes – there’s something about the work of Jens Wolf that’s undeniably intriguing and complex. Bringing to mind the likes of Josef Albers and Frank Stella, his abstract pieces set off their precise geometry with deliberate imperfections that add a human element to its formality. With his first London show opening in March, we had a chat with him about the creative process, the evolution of his work and why his London is forever foggy.

  12. Mp_home1

    We interviewed Mathis Pfäffli back in 2012 about his design practice and working day. The Swiss-born graphic designer has segued from the playful and considered printed matter that we’re used to and produced a series of large-scale pencil drawings.

  13. List

    While there’s nothing especially unusual or out of place in the still, unpeopled scenes of Sarah Schneider’s paintings, there’s undoubtedly something intriguing, disquieting even. Rendered in eerie stillness, it feels almost like the calm before the storm, each little soap dispenser, tissue or chair sitting idle, waiting for something to happen to it.