George Rush - IN THE HOUSE IN THE WOOD BY THE LAKE, 12 August - 18 September 2004

Galerie Mikael Andersen is pleased to invite you to the opening of the exhibition 'In the House in the Wood by the Lake' with new paintings by George Rush. Rush has painted a series of pictures that use the genres of the still life, the exterior, and the portrait to create an atmosphere suggestive of a momento mori.

 

 

The twentieth century house represented in these paintings reflected in many ways the ideals of an optimistic and progressive generation while at the same time exposing unresolved problems of class, privelage and social anxiety. Here, the artist uses a typical view of a glass house, to give a setting for a series of portraits. The elders in the portraits would have been young at the time of the glass house, perhaps the first generation to build and live in such spaces. Long titles accompanying the portraits give some information regarding the subjects, concentrating on the complexity of influence within contemporary society.

 

 

Interspersed throughout the exhibition is also a series of still life paintings. The motifs in the paintings are intentionally remeniscent of Morandi and Cezanne. By subverting these refernces by the manipulation of various colour schemes, Rush explores and confronts issues of nostalgia and sentimentality inherent in exploring the near past.As a painter, George Rush is influenced by American realism and the larger modernist tradition, seen through various lenses of contemporary culture. Many influences resonate through his paintings, from Manet through Alex Katz. Rush is primarily known for an ongoing series of paintings of interiors, in which various motifs often appear as quiet sillouettes.

 

Though this exhibition is a formal departure for Rush, what remains is the latent pressure of the play between fiction, the past and the present that is seen in all his work.The title 'In the House in the Wood by the Lake' references the Danish origins of the exhibition; Rush has executed the entire series of paintings during his stay in Galerie Mikael Anderen's studio house in Northern Zeeland. The title also reflects the house in the paintings themselves, as well as to a passing time in the history of the American ideals of freedom and liberalism.