Working predominantly in oils and acrylics, Jacob Gourley is a 27 year old representational painter whose practice explores the boundaries between realism and abstraction. His paintings often have a dream-like quality, whereby figures dissolve into or emerge out of semi-ambiguous backgrounds. At the heart of Jacob’s practice is a keen attention to the artwork’s formal qualities, such as shape, tone, edges, colour, and composition.
‘In these serene, otherworldly paintings, the artist responds intuitively to the theme of the lotus flower. Steeped in mythical significance for its singular life cycle, rising through the murky depths and blooming without a blemish, only to emerge through the mud again the next morning, a vision of purity.
As our gaze is directed to the single subject, the artist’s partner, we are encouraged to dwell on how these themes of rebirth and resilience apply to the mundanity of the scenes before us. The ethereal reflections and diffused light take away our sense of place and surety, transporting us to a welcoming netherworld of possibilities. There is obscurity about the images that defies an easy definition, and instead, evokes intrigue and curiosity. A tangible sensation of waiting to rise’.
During his time at University, Jacob was awarded a scholarship to study at the British School in Rome for a month in 2016. This experience, along with 4 consecutive summers spent working in Verrochio Art Centre in Tuscany, the artist admits, were highly influential to his practice.
As a result of the Belle Vue Arts Festival Competition, The Soden Collection is now representing Jacob Gourley as one of the gallery artists, whose work is now for sale alongside, Halima Cassell MBE, Antony Gormley and Damien Hirst, to name but a few!
Title: Umai, Shrewsbury
Medium: Oil on Board
Date Executed: 2023
Size: 8 x 10″ (Unframed)
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