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Posted by / 19-Sep-2020 07:14

The works offer complex fictional portrayals of the artist's heroines painted chronologically and moving...'If you do not solve your painting problem in painting human beings, you do not solve it at all'.Almost always depicting women or girls, sometimes in groups but recently in iconic portraits, Joffe’s paintings only waveringly adhere to their source – be it a photograph, magazine page or even a reflection in the mirror – instead reminding us that distortions of scale and form can often make a subject seem more real.

Tensions between the scale of the work and the apparent intimacy of the scene depicted heighten already complex narratives about connection, perception and representation that, implicit in the relationship between artist and subject, are extended to the viewer as a series of propositions and provocations.Appropriation of existing imagery has been a cornerstone, particularly in the works for which she first became known.Joffe ennobles the people she paints by rehabilitating the photographic image but, crucially, recognises that it is paint itself – its spatio-temporal complexities rather than attendant theories or sociopolitical ideas surrounding subject matter – that keeps us engaged.Practising painting and drawing as the loving collection of subjects, people met in the flesh and on the page,...The exhibition centred around a powerful group of seven large-scale paintings where the artist restricted her palette to dark tones of black, red, blue and white.

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On view at Victoria Miro Mayfair are selected self-portraits from a series begun in January 2018, by the acclaimed British painter Chantal Joffe.

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