Green Stairway and Yellow Roses

Alfie Caine

28.05.2024 | 01.06.2024
Pièce Unique

MASSIMODECARLO Pièce Unique is delighted to present an exhibition of two new works by Alfie Caine. The British artist’s first solo exhibition in Paris, the paintings Green Stairway and Yellow Roses encourage us to view Caine’s uniquely crafted dreamlike worlds from unusual perspectives and viewpoints.

In his paintings the sleek lines of imagined architecture are united with interpretations of the diverse landscape drawn from around the artist’s home in East Sussex on the south coast of the UK. Almost always set during the ambiguous atmosphere created by either dawn or dusk, these works hover in a liminal space, between the real and surreal, between night and day, joy and melancholy. This synthesis of genuine and imagined moments creates scenes of compelling escapism.


In Green Stairway we gaze on the top of a staircase, seemingly hovering in the hall of an isolated hillside home. A hallway is a point of passage, a place of stillness that at any moment might be enlivened by an abrupt movement. We rarely linger on the stairs, but it is a viewpoint that has the potential to see so much. As children we often sit halfway down the stairs, hoping to catch a glimpse of a party or a snippet of conversation; we form a narrative from snatched moments to create our own storyline. In this space devoid of humans, we focus on the curious objects that line the passage, drawing clues from the display as to who might live here. The possible narratives within the scene are prompted by the objects themselves, each one offering the potential to spark all manner of allusions, stories, and wonder. In these spaces that are defined by things rather than people, Caine creates places to ‘have an individual experience –there is nobody here – there is no judgement – you can reveal as much or as little as you want’.


Yellow Roses provides a new point of view: we sit at a dining table, cutlery laid for one within touching distance. We are actively part of the scene, sitting within it, but now at the base of the rolling hills of Green Stairway, low-down in the East Sussex topography. Each object leads us onto the next in a compositional dance that ends at the view beyond the window. The geometric lines of the home are at odds with the undulating curves of the streams and the hazy hills that surround it, yet there is a beauty and harmony that coexists within this contrast. The glowing yellow rose, inspired by a flower in his mother’s garden, leans into the window frame, bridging the gap between the interior and exterior worlds. The flower belongs to the world outside the strict confines of the house, it has the fluidity of nature in its shape, but the artist treats it with the same sculptural solidity as the architectural features. Though the layout and furniture of the room are drawn from the artist’s own home, this is not the view beyond his door, but a memory of a moment of atmospheric beauty during an evening cycle through the salt marshes that lead to the sea, a stone’s throw from Caine’s studio.

The vitrine space of Pièce Unique gives importance to the experience of looking at an artwork, similar to Caine’s encouragement to spend time with his scene’s framed landscapes. The paintings, showed one at a time, are allowed the same room and pride of place that the artist gives to the objects within his paintings. Viewed from the street of Rue de Turenne, Green Stairway and Yellow Roses sit at the midway point of multiple layers of thresholds, enhancing the role of his artworks as a space of both physical and mental refuge between the real and imaginary worlds.

The Artist

Alfie Caine

Alfie Caine was born in 1996 in London, UK. He lives and works in Rye, East Sussex.

Caine’s artistic practice centres on crafting expansive worlds that operate at all levels; in the architecture and fantasised countryside beyond their windows, down to the minutiae of cutlery, tiles, and fabrics. Navigating through dreamlike architectural landscapes becomes both a refuge from personal challenges and a powerful avenue for self-expression.

The former architecture graduate will have his first solo exhibition in France at MASSIMODECARLO Pièce Unique. Recent exhibitions include his inaugural solo exhibition What Lies Beyond, Union Gallery, London, UK (2021), Moments of Calm, JARILAGER Gallery X Lotte Gallery, Seoul, South Korea (2022) and High Humanity, Jack Siebert Projects, Paris (2022).

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