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The title Soft Painting aims to draw our attention to the actual physical qualities of a painting rather than acting as an introduction to an image or to suggest a narrative.  Simon Callery creates paintings that communicate on a physical level.  A painting can be soft or hard as much as it can be red or green.

From Monday 13 – Wednesday 29 April Simon worked in the gallery space with a selected group of Nottingham Trent BA (Hons) Fine Art students and Nottingham-based artists, to produce three large-scale works.  Rolls of canvas were washed and prepared for saturation in pigmented distempers  – a process where the industrial starch is removed from the canvas and the dense and highly coloured medium is washed into the softened fabric at high temperature.  These worked canvasses were then hung off frames to dry before being cut up, sorted and sewn into the formal configurations of soft paintings.

From Thursday 30 April – Friday 15 May the Gallery took the form of a contemporary gallery space, where the outcomes of the making process were realised in a final staged exhibition.

We caught up with Simon at his London-based studio for a behind the scenes look at his collection and to view his work in progress:

For the duration of this exhibition the Gallery became a space for learning where the connections between the making, installing and exhibition of artwork were exposed.  The public were invited to witness and engage with the entire process.

Participants shared their images on Instagram using the hashtag #SoftPainting, you can read more about how the project evolved on our Latest News page.

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