This is our first solo exhibition with painter, Simone Lucas. Lucas studied at the Düsseldorf Art Academy, where she was Meisterschülerin (“master apprentice”) to painter, Dieter Krieg, a representative of the Neue Figuration.
In her dream-like imagery, she combines expressionist and surrealist elements to create a very unique cosmos.
The exhibition deals predominantly with the interplay between indoor and outdoor space, like so many of her paintings do. This is comparable to a slow journey of the inner eye through a whole cosmos / planetary system in which there are infinite possibilities and paths. Lucas explains: “These interior spaces (or the journey through interior spaces) were undoubtedly created in the wake of the pandemic, which is obstructing the outside world. The picture “Space Traveller” (the traveller on the turtle) has a similar theme: it slowly moves towards the constellation of the little bear that you can see in the window.”Throughout the exhibition, the signs of the zodiac might be the bridge to the many small paintings that connect animals and humans. For Simone, they are a kind of research project relating to Charles Darwin’s famous first sketch of an evolutionary family tree from 1837. This very simple, naively childlike and playful sketch is a symbol and an illustration of systematic, scientific research. In this way, Lucas combines art and science, consciously trying to maintain a childlike view of imagery.
In this exhibition, interiors are not only to be understood as inner worlds found in the mind, but also to be understood quite literally with the many scenes in closed rooms or studio situations. One or more people create imagery or their own cosmos, which in turn can break all boundaries and refers to the exterior, nature, the infinite breadth and variety of life and possibilities. Some of the new works look like an oversized painter’s palette, on which the artist lets us understand how, under the hand of the painter, the subject slowly develops from a rush of different colours. Lucas wants to make the process of painting and image finding visible. She makes it evident that every image is an imagined image in which the artist’s eye appropriates reality and shapes this into something new as she pleases. Such as the lady in the eponymous picture “The Slow Eye” who is surrounded by planets or galaxy models, but transforms these into a rectangular spiral shape, giving her own rules within the art context precedence over the laws of nature. The title of this work is programmatic. She appeals for a closer look. The “slow eye” is challenged again, namely the concentration on essentials within the constant noise of flood of media imagery. Here, just like in many of the paintings of her oeuvre, Lucas deals with the role of women in society. She often falls back on female figures who, through their clothing, are reminiscent of the late 19th or early 20th century – a time in which the foundations for the social emancipation of women in education, science, work and also in the role within the family were laid.
Exhibition: 22 January – 24 April 2021