Pi Artworks London is pleased to present Activities for the Abyss, London-based painter Selma Parlour’s second solo exhibition at the gallery.
Selma Parlour is a prolific award-winning artist known for her oil paintings that look as though they are drawn, dyed, or printed. With over 30 unseen artworks from the last 2 years, Activities for the Abyss showcases the artist’s soft films of luminescent colour, her delicately-rendered pencil-like oil-made lines and sumptuously refined matt surfaces, her diagrammatic approach that stresses painting’s two-dimensionality, her units of colour inlaid as though through a process of marquetry, her fascination with homeless representation, trompe-l’oeil illusion, multistable perception, and cognitive completion, her emphasis on mise en abyme, repetition (with variation and displacement), and the material apparatus of painting, as well as her architectural and virtual spatial explorations.
“I conceive of my practice through a syntactical lens, contriving a self-styled coda to historic abstract painting in order to reassess its assorted theoretical proclamations and in/extrinsic conventions. For this exhibition my abstract-paintings-of-photography’s-installation-shot-of-abstract-painting and my analytically charged frame paintings fill the gallery walls as a myriad of images copied and distributed. My individual oil painting practice is also infiltrated by 3 mechanised procedures that take place beyond my studio. The 3 machines - 1) a laser engraving machine, 2) an old-tech duplicator, and 3) an ageing industrial coding machine - lend themselves to my calculated methodology, with each imposing their own possibilities and limitations upon my creative developments.”
Selma Parlour: (b. Johannesburg, S.A. 1976). Awards include the ‘Mark Rothko Memorial Trust Artist-in-Residence Award’ (2018), the ‘Sunny Dupree Family Award for a Woman Artist’, the Summer Exhibition, the Royal Academy of Arts, London (2017), and the John Moores Painting Prize (2016, prizewinner). Other notable awards are her artist residency at Dio Horia, Athens and Island of Mykonos, Greece (2015), and a runner-up award from the Arts Foundation, UK (2014). During her doctoral studies at Goldsmiths, University of London, Selma Parlour received a research support award (2012), and went on to complete her PhD in Art in 2014. That same year her work was selected for Thames and Hudson’s international competition and publication ‘100 Painters of Tomorrow’. Exhibitions include: ‘Upright Animal’, curated by Sacha Craddock, Pi Artworks, London (2018, solo); ‘Parlour Games’, Marcelle Joseph Projects, the House of St Barnabas, London (2016, site-specific, solo); MOT International, London (2012, solo); ‘Selma Parlour & Yelena Popova, Horton Gallery, New York (2012); and Bloomberg New Contemporaries, ICA, London (2011). Collections include the Saatchi Gallery, London.