Wagner Contemporary is thrilled to be presenting Al Poulet at this year’s Sydney Contemporary Art Fair at Carriageworks (September 12-15). Al Poulet was the Winner of the 2018 Paddington Art Prize.
Al Poulet’s exhibition, ‘Untitled: W’, captures, through a series of large-scale abstract paintings, the young artist’s relationship with his immediate surroundings. Although his works cast off the representational trappings of our reality, each painted mark and visceral line indexes Poulet’s connection to his home in Wedderburn. Drawing on his long meandering walks through the bush and in situ studies, Poulet is able to capture a fugitive, fleeting, form of nature. “The moment you step into the landscape, you are no longer simply an observer or separate from it, you are in it as well,” he explains. “That’s how I think about paint.”
In Poulet’s works, place is not just a theme, but an enlivened experience. “When you are in the moment fully, you make the right mark; you might question the mark afterwards but the point of the mark was presentness,” he observes. Poulet’s abstracted paintings retain a paradoxical nature as they both reflect this specific sense of place and time, and maintain a broader accessibility, which is untethered to context. His paintings are at once personal and universal. Indeed, despite the absence of trees, rocks, or water, the painter manages to distil the most essential aspects of the land: transferring Wedderburn onto the canvas, and transporting the viewer to Wedderburn.