Gallery 9 is delighted to present Tonee Messiah's exhibition Dubious Desire, opening online on September 1, 2021.
Dubious Desire surveys the mechanics of doubt and desire. This body of work continues Tonee Messiah's practice of relational observation between psychological states and their reverberation in physical sensations. Doubt and desire are explored as impulses that perform in opposition to each other but exist in close proximity. The polarising effects of these two states both operate as activating forces, one to generate momentum and the other to temper and abate.
This body of work responds to the choreography of both states operating within thought, and the responding sensations they create within the body. The dialogue between these is observed and used to inform the collection of work through abstract painting processes. The space of the paintings' planar is neutral territory that backdrops the theatrics of activity. Desire is seen as fast-moving gesture with hovering irregular form and buoyant acidic colour. Doubt infiltrates the zones of desire as a counterbalance in weight, movement and speed. Desire generates momentum inside and around the boundary of the frame, whereas doubt emerges to slow and still its erratic motion.
The potential for slow evolving responses to the nuances of thought and sensation sit comfortably in Messiah's processes of abstraction. Within her system of abstract painting, desire and doubt play equally activating roles. The negotiation of momentum and necessity for restraint and reflection form a foundation for the incremental expansion of knowledge in both her psychological and painterly processes.
Press release courtesy Gallery 9.