20TH OF JULY - 17TH OF AUGUST 2019
Jerico Contemporary is pleased to present Paige Northwood’s second solo show with the gallery, Sacred Life. The show opens on Thursday the 25th of July and continues through to Saturday the 17th of August 2019.
Sacred Life is an exhibition that investigates themes of bodily experience and transcendence, and the notions and learnings that come with living remotely. The exhibition sees Northwood explore the potential of her body through physical mark making in a personal attempt to be present and completely aware of her own existence and creative output. This personal commitment to self was initiated in the Northern Territory, far from Northwood’s origins on theSouth Coast, New South Wales. At large, Sacred Life acknowledges the precious nature of our existence and the unique individual and collective experiences we share.
Similarly, Sacred Life is a representation of Northwood’s experience of living between Alice Springs and theIndigenous community of Hermannsburg (Ntaria), which has shaped and changed her practice. Living remotely offered the artist an entry point into a detached state, so she could enter into another, in order to shift and deepen her artistic practice and colour palette. Expanding on her signature organic like ceramic vessels, Northwood presents her first series of paintings in this new body of work, leaning into another element of visceral play and artistic expression. Between painting and ceramics, Sacred Life has seen Northwood develop a stronger affinity with hands-on methods of painting and making—without brushes or tools, instead using locally dug clay from AliceSprings, charcoal from the fire, drawing with found pigment, and applying medium with her hands in an ‘expressive dance’. Instead of using local ochre, Northwood created her own, due to feeling uncomfortable with ‘taking’ fromthe ochre pits on Aboriginal land.
Being displaced from convenience saw Northwood thrive in an environment that breathes its own way of life, enriched with a wealth of natural resources, void of the latest technology and easy access to man-made art materials. Ultimately, a different way of living and being evoked resourcefulness, enabling Northwood to delve into her way of intuitive artmaking and truly honour the cohesiveness that exists between the body, mind, and land.
This connection that permeates Northwood’s work is known as animism—the attribution of a living soul to plants, inanimate objects, and natural phenomena, the belief that life runs through all things—and the removal of hierarchy for a more Daoist approach to interconnectivity and oneness with the world. Through her work, the artist honours and reflects on a deep connection with, and respect for, the land and a desperate need to conserve, respect, and protect it. Northwood says, “My process is about getting out of the head and into the body. It’s a body-based experience free of the mind’s chatter and tendency to get in the way. It’s freedom from thought. The point of my work is to be in the flow on each mark, a graceful and playful dance. The rhythmic energy that flows on the paper is an expression of a larger vibrating power. I attempt to connect to this and honour this; my unity and oneness with something much larger”.
Paige Northwood was born in 1988. Her solo exhibitions include, ‘The Mind That Bends’, Jerico Contemporary, Sydney (2018). Her group exhibitions include, ‘Barkers & Biters’, aMBUSH, Sydney (2018), ‘Synchronicity’, Clifton School of Arts, Clifton (2016), ‘Overture’, Jerico Contemporary, Sydney (2016). The artist currently lives between Alice Springs and Hermmansburg, Northern Territory, Australia.
PREVIOUS EXHIBITION: ‘THE MIND THAT BENDS’
Jerico Contemporary presented Paige Northwood's debut solo exhibition, ‘The Mind That Bends’. The show opened on March 22nd, and continued through April 7th, 2018.