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Art Now: France-Lise McGurn, Sleepless

France-Lise McGurn

29.06.2019 | 08.09.2019
Tate Britain, London

The Artist

France-Lise McGurn

France-Lise McGurn was born in Glasgow, UK in 1983.

Evading the boundaries of the traditional picture plane, McGurn often eschews the limits of her canvases by extending the imagery directly onto the gallery walls and furniture brought into the space, displacing her subject and creating an immersive environment. Instead of approaching a static painting, the artist activates the composition allowing the figures and forms to be seen as though in a field of vision. Occasionally confrontational, sometimes passive, sometimes ecstatic, these characters shift through these emotions constantly reforming their personas.

Key themes in Mcgurn’s work include music, dreams, memory and popular culture. Her visual sources have included 70s film stills, Janus fetish magazine, Botticelli prints and celebrity autographs. The works are developed intuitively via the artist's use of swift calligraphic brush marks and attention to the human form. Repeated lines and movement recall antiquity but are similarly influenced by Glasgow’s post-industrial city aesthetic. With her paintings, Mcgurn builds loops through pastel colours, speed and fluid motion. Playing with ideas around circadian rhythms and familiarity her works un-stagnate and are experienced rather than seen.

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