Issuu on Google+

Paul Balmer C

I

T

Y

S

C

A

P

E

S


Paul Balmer C

I

T

Y

S

C

A

P

E

S

Though his newest works capture the cityscapes of his current home in New York, Paul Balmer’s unexpected color combinations and primitive, earthy shapes are markedly influenced by his roots in South Africa and Australia. Whether drenched in evocative palettes of vermillion and ochre, or awash in subtle shades of gray and verdigris, his urban structures seem to both effuse and refract light, lending an ethereal, almost organic feel to the compositions. Often choosing a removed, elevated perspective, Balmer recreates the City as a mythical, timeless setting for romantic narratives.

Artist Reception & B oo k si g nin g S AT U R DAY, A PRI L 1 6 | 5 TO 8 P M E x h i b i t i o n c o n t i n u e s t h ro u g h M ay 5

The dreamy, meditative mood of these paintings belies a powerfully intensive process: Balmer’s heavily worked canvases are wrought in thick layers of oil, then carefully sanded when dry. “I use a brush and burnisher, rubber rollers and spatulas,” he notes, “but the most fun comes from power tools: my disk sander and Dremel are used as much as the paintbrush.” 

4 5 1 W E S T B R O A D W AY • N Y C C A M P T O N G A LL E R Y. C O M 2 1 2 . 3 8 7. 0 2 0 8

Through this simple yet inventive technique, he evokes a stunning sense of depth and tactility, imbuing the iconic skylines with an anomalous and wondrous serenity. His intention, he says, is to “break up any regularity of line and shape,” and “give the paintings an element of controlled randomness.” The results are exquisite, and always surprising.

With an artistic energy that pays tribute to Cy Twombly and Jean-Michel Basquiat, S A I L IN G ON Y E L L O W • 3 4 X 6 4 I N C H E S • O I L O N C A N V A S

Balmer deftly explores the area between controlled representation and spontaneous abstraction, aiming to make his paintings “as abstract as possible, without losing the essence of the scene.” In fact, this grasp of essence is precisely what is so striking about his work, drawing the viewer irresistibly into the utopian realm of his creation, a place where it is still possible to find silence and contemplation.

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011


P L A Y G RO U N D • 3 0 X 8 0 I N C H E S • O I L O N W O O D

M A N H A TT A N • 4 0 X 8 0 I N C H E S • O I L O N W O O D

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011


NI G H T L I F E • 3 0 X 2 4 I N C H E S • O I L O N W O O D F I F T Y NINT H STREET • 3 0 X 8 0 I N C H E S • O I L O N W O O D

“ Ra n d o m n e s s , i t ’ s all a b o u t c o n t r o ll e d r a n d o m n e s s . You set it up so mistakes will happen; they can be erased or kept or form the basis for another start. I work on many paintings simultaneously and often don’t know which direction they may go in. It’s somewhat of an exploration and you can travel down that road and see where it takes you. Experimentation is a fundamental part of the process for me. Letting accidents happen is the fine line between craftsmanship and freedom.”

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011


B L A C K RI V ER • 3 0 X 8 0 I N C H E S • M I X E D M E D I A O N W O O D

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011

Pau l B a l m e r 2 011


Pau l B a l m e r 2 011 Pau l B a l m e r 2 011

BRI D G E & B A Y • 4 2 X 7 8 I N C H E S • M I X E D M E D I A O N C A N V A S


CO V ER : STI L L NI G H T • 6 8 X 8 0 I N C H E S • O I L O N C A N VA S • EC L IPSE • 4 2 X 7 5 I N C H E S • O I L O N W O O D • A LL I M A G E S © PA UL B A LM E R 2 0 1 1

451 WEST BROADWAY | NEW YORK, NY 10021

Paul Balmer C

I

T

Y

S

C

A

P

E

S

Artist Reception & B oo k si g nin g S AT U R DAY, A PRI L 1 6 | 5 TO 8 P M

prsrt FIRST CLASS U.S. POSTAGE PAID SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO PERMIT NO. 655


Gallery catalog