A collaboration with Brendan Van Hek
Firstdraft Gallery, Sydney, January 2015
Colour is the devil is an exhibition that brings together two practices that focus on colour as a tactic and strategy to investigate ideas on marginalisation, social hierarchies and the urban condition. James Dodd and Brendan Van Hek each bring different approaches to this exhibition through a varied use of colour, materials and form. Dodd uses a fluorescent and intoxicating palette of colours that manifest in variously scraped, scrawled and sprayed gestures that clash and irritate the senses, while Van Hek adds elements of the surreal to an already heightened atmosphere through his use of neon, fluorescent lights and coloured light filters. In this first time collaboration the artists are testing intersections of their work and interests, in pursuit of a ride that is part dream and part hallucination.
Both artists bring to this project a common interest in colour and its potential to convey ideas of social and cultural concern. In his practice Dodd chooses an intense, high key palette of painted outcomes that slip between the canvas, the wall and the gutter. Snippets of text that might be overheard or skimmed from the everyday become lurid, gaudy embellishments. Van Hek takes a different approach to colour in the form of light installations that are underpinned by personal narrative and interrogate social and hierarchical structures.