Rod Barton

41 - 43 Consort Road, London SE15 3SS // +44 (0) 207 639 0400
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Tom Howse
Post-Celestial Compost. 

14th September - 21st October, 2017
Rod Barton, London

Selected press:

Stephen Fuller - Interview

Installation view

ENCHANTING SERPENTS KISSED THE DESERT, 2017 / Acrylic on canvas / 197 x 154 cms / 77 1/2 x 60 5/8 in

SOLIPSISTIC PALIMPSEST, 2017 / Acrylic on canvas / 350 x 220 cms / 137 3/4 x 86 5/8 in

Installation view

BIRD CACTUS, 2017 / Acrylic on canvas / 67 x 57 cms / 26 3/8 x 22 1/2 in

Installation view

TIMELESS PERIOD OF THOSE CELESTIAL WONDERS, 2017 / Acrylic on canvas / 350 x 210 cms / 137 3/4 x 82 5/8 in

GRACEFUL UNDERSTANDING, 2017 / Acrylic on canvas / 200 x 160 cms / 78 3/4 x 63 in

Rod Barton is excited to announce the solo show “Post-Celestial Compost,” opening September 14, from English painter Tom Howse. The exhibition includes a selection of recent paintings from the artist’s current practice.

When visiting the artist’s studio, a casual viewer may be forgiven for feeling that they have somehow stumbled down a twisted rabbit hole to a version of Wonderland that has been allowed to mature and grow unchecked since Alice’s escape back to real- ity. The artist himself states that he only seems to paint at a life size ratio. Subsequently, Howse’s compositions act as unsettled tableaus: wild vistas and twisted mischievous mirrors. The viewer does not look into realities constructed by Howse, rather they are absorbed into pre-existing universes--where an UFO, household furniture, and anthropomorphic celestial bodies unques- tionably coexist--that have their own universal rules and laws that seem out of place until experienced in person.

Howse’s aesthetic lends itself to the experimental and the otherworldly. His painting’s, whilst singular in their presentation, all belong to a shared visual vocabulary. Perspective is utilised via shifting flat planes, as opposed to a singular vanishing point, that allow for a feeling that of moving through a singular world. We subsequently cross through into a whole new universe at each plane of the paintings existence. The artist’s application of paint is rough without straying into the violent. Allowing for air bubbles, ephemeral studio matter and increasingly rough canvas surfaces, Howse plays with his surfaces with a more caring eye than visually aggressive painters. There is no feeling of attempting to viscerally assault a viewer, but instead an allusion to a subconscious, fluidic and instinctive process that invites translation onto the canvas. We know what we’re looking at, yet we cannot fathom the world in which it sits.

Tom Howse, born in Chester 1988, lives and works in London and has exhibited across Europe including Munich, Cologne and Oxford. Post-Celestial Compost will run between 14th September - 21st October, 2017 at Rod Barton, 41-43 Consort Road, London.