L.A. Exhibitions. The Call of the Void. By Ian Francis


OPENING RECEPTION. September 21, 2019 | 7pm – 11pm. ON VIEW: September 21 – October 26, 2019. COREY HELFORD GALLERY. 571 S. Anderson St. Los Angeles, CA 90033. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 12pm – 6pm. (310) 287-2340

Returning to Los Angeles since his last major solo show at Corey Helford Gallery in 2017, entitled Artificial Winter, is one of the most sought after artists of the New Contemporary Art scene, Ian Francis. Exploring the environmental collapse and people’s relationship with the environment is Francis’ new body of work, entitled The Call of the Void, opening Saturday, September 21st in the Main Gallery.

The British mixed-media artist, whose paintings, are inspired by the visual style of modern computer games, often depict violent, urban scenes. His information-rich canvases contain both figurative and abstract elements rendered in acrylic and oil, charcoal, and ink. Francis’ paintings described as wonderfully serious and quiet at the same time, give the viewer the feeling that they are gazing into a dream world. With lush palettes, the work fades into and out of itself repeatedly, drawing one in to study what Francis’ lets the viewer see and wonder about what’s not there.

"Bird Toys/Predator" (mixed media on wood panel, 31.5" x 43")
“Bird Toys/Predator” (mixed media on wood panel, 31.5″ x 43″)

Regarding The Call of the Void, Francis shares: “The phrase ‘call of the void’ refers to the strange sensation when you’re at a great height and gravity seems to begin pulling you at an oblique angle towards the edge, despite having no suicidal intentions. In this show I was interested in exploring the strained relationship between the modern world we’ve created and its animal inhabitants, at a time where we seem to be at the edge of an ecological tipping point. I wanted to make paintings of dystopian dreamscapes, with people interacting with strange, reconstructed forms of nature.

I’ve always loved technology, futurism and the world we’ve created for ourselves, but it’s hard not to be horrified by the impact our way of life is having on the planet. Even nominally wild animals now exist within the boundaries of a human constructed world they didn’t evolve for. Turning back the clock seems impossible, so the only real hope appears to be relying on technological solutions to our problems, but even if that’s in some way successful it feels like the result will be a strange and different world.

I was drawn to the idea of creating images of constructed animals by layering together different elements, including skeletons, polygonal structures, empty outlines and garish colors. I wanted to create a sense of facsimile, an idea of a beautiful natural thing that has been lost and replaced with something with a similar form, but distinctly different.”

The Call of the Void opens Saturday, September 21st from 7pm-11pm in the Main Gallery, alongside a two-artist show with Jillian Evelyn and Kristen Liu-Wong, entitled Not a Flower Alone, in Gallery 2 and a solo show from Kai and Sunny, entitled In the Drift, in Gallery 3. Corey Helford Gallery is located at 571 S. Anderson St. Los Angeles, CA 90033 and normal hours are Tuesday – Saturday, from 12pm – 6pm.

About Ian Francis:

Multimedia artist Ian Francis currently lives and works in Bristol, UK, where he was born in 1979. Francis received a BA in art and illustration in 2001 from University of the West of England. He’s exhibited across the world, from his native U.K. to shows in the U.S., Germany, and Sydney.

About Corey Helford Gallery:

Corey Helford Gallery (CHG) was first established in 2006 by Jan Corey Helford and her husband, television producer and creator, Bruce Helford (The Conners, Anger Management, The Drew Carey Show, George Lopez) and has since evolved into one of the premier galleries of New Contemporary art. Its goals as an institution are the support and growth of young and emerging, to well-known and internationally established artists.

CHG represents a diverse collection of international artists, primarily influenced by today’s pop culture and collectively encompassing style genres such as New Figurative Art, Pop Surrealism, Neo Pop, Graffiti and Street Art. CHG is located in Downtown Los Angeles in a robust 12,000 square foot building presenting new exhibitions approximately every six weeks.

For more info and an upcoming exhibition schedule, visit CoreyHelfordGallery.com and connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

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