Jadé Fadojutimi at The Hepworth Gallery, Wakefield, UK.

This artist has been on my radar for some time. So I was thrilled to discover that Jadé Fadojutimi’s work is currently being shown at The Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield, Yorkshire. It was well worth the journey….

Jadé Fadojutimi initially studied at The Slade and then the Royal College of Art. She graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2017 and is represented by the Pippa Houldsworth Gallery in London. The Hepworth Gallery provides a minimalist backdrop to Jade’s work and when I visited it was beautifully empty and flooded with light. Even the furniture had been removed to maximise the effect of these huge, bold canvases. 

It is evident on first glance that Jadé Fadojutimi loves colour. I took a walk around the room just to appreciate the scale of the canvases and the light streaming into the space. Her work is big and bold with lots of movement in big gestural brushstrokes across the canvas. At first glance the paintings wholly appear abstract but on further scrutiny and a closer examination it is evident that there are some figurative elements within the layers. When you get up close to the canvases you can see these big, gestural brushstrokes on the surface and then these scapings back to reveal multiple layers of colour underneath. Somehow these underneath colours seem to provide a luminoscity from within. 

At one end of the room is The Empress of The Plants 2022. Acrylic, oil and oil pastel on canvas, 300 x 800 cm. The work is enormous and it takes time to look at it and go back and forth to appreciate the pops of red and purple against the backdrop of vivid greens. You instinctively feel this painting is about plants and rainforest before looking at the title. I loved the big bold blue strokes that appeared to float on top of the canvas. 

At the other end of the room is How to Protect A Smile , 2022. This is another vast canvas that includes light sensitive paints that change colour with the natural change of the light. The blue is ultraviolet and appears to jump out of the canvas as the light changes. This gives the impression of the work continually evolving. 

Woven Futures 2022 is a beautiful mix of red, purple, lilac and green tendrils snaking across the canvas. I loved the childlike drawing quality of the green lines interweaving. 

After the exhibition I went into the gallery café to have a coffee and reflect and read about Jade Fadojutimi. It makes sense to know that she literally dances to loud music whilst creating these large canvases. This physicality and flow of movement comes across in her huge gestural brushstrokes. It was really empowering to see these large expressive canvases against the backdrop of the minimalist gallery and the large windows allowing light to flood in over views of the nearby running water from the River Calder. 

After delicious coffee I then went to see the works of Hannah Starkey . She explores women’s lives through photography. She presents quiet intimate moments, interactions between people socially and political happenings. Her work is choreographed and the end result is astonishing and very clever. At the end of the exhibition was a commission made in collaboration with women from Wakefield communities and seeing their view on how women are perceived through photography. 

Her work also reminded me of the work of Rachel Whiteread, in a sense that she too captures unseen spaces or moments barely noticeable through sculpture. Hannah Starkey captures those glimpses of unseen moments. In the artist’s own words” The quiet moments, the everyday and the fleeting resonatebecause of their familiarity and ambiguity allows the viewer to apply their own narratives.”. 

This was also captivating and introduced me to a new artist. 

Hannah Starkey : In Real Life runs until 30th April 2023.

Jadé Fadojutimi : Can we see the colour green because we have a name for it ? Runs until March 19th , 2023. 

Jadé Fadojutimi

1. Image courtesy the artist and Pippa Houldsworth Gallery, London. © Jadé Fadojutimi Photograph by Ami Podrebarac

2. Jadé Fadojutimi, The Empress of the Plants, 2022. 300x 800 cm, Acrylic, oil and oil pastel on canvas. Photo: Michael Brzezinski. Courtesy: Jadé Fadojutimi

3. Jadé Fadojutimi, How to Protect a Smile, 2022. 300 x 500 cm, Acrylic, oil and oil pastel on canvas. Photo: Michael Brzezinski. Courtesy: Jadé Fadojutimi

4. Jadé Fadojutimi, An Empathic Revolution, 2022. 190 x 170 cm, Acrylic, oil and oil pastel on canvas. Photo: Michael Brzezinski. Courtesy: Jadé Fadojutimi

5. Jadé Fadojutimi, Woven Futures, 2022. 170 x 180 cm, Acrylic, oil and oil pastels on canvas. Photo: Michael Brzezinski. Courtesy: Jadé Fadojutimi

Hannah Starkey 

1. Hannah Starkey, Wakey Tavern, 2022. 2022. C-Type photographic print mounted on aluminium. Courtesy of the artist. Maureen Paley, London and Tanya BonakdarGallery, New York / Los Angeles. 

2. Hannah Starkey, Untitled, August 2013, 2013. Frames c-type print mounted on aluminium © Hannah Starkey. Courtesy Maureen Paley, London

In 2018, The Hepworth Wakefield launched school prints, a revival of a 1940s scheme to give school children access to quality contemporary art. Here is a link to the Schools Print Project which also runs at The Hepworth Gallery Wakefield  https://hepworthwakefield.org/your-visit/for-schools-colleges-and-universities/schools-and-colleges-school-prints/

Laisser un commentaire

%d blogueurs aiment cette page :