Two Rooms is delighted to present a curated exhibition featuring four artists from New Zealand, Australia and the Netherlands, Selina Foote, John Nixon, Jeena Shin and Jan van der Ploeg, at the 2018 Melbourne Art Fair. United by their adherence to geometry and abstraction, the artists produce non-objective paintings that explore the visual impact of graphic shapes and colours. Although they display some aesthetic similarities, the interests and methods of the artists are remarkably diverse.
Korean born and New Zealand domiciled artist, Jeena Shin utilises a restricted monochromatic palette to craft highly rhythmic paintings composed entirely of triangular forms. Limiting herself to painting a singular shape, Shin operates within the boundless variables of placement. Appearing to shift across the surface, Shin's nuanced layers of overlapping forms create an energetic dynamism as figure and ground are reversed and interlaced.
The high level of exactitude, and the indeterminate relationship between foreground and background in Shin's work is also characteristic of Dutch artist, Jan van der Ploeg's paintings. Interested in the ability of simple forms and vibrant hues to mediate and transform spatial awareness and visual perception, he explores the seemingly endless potential of equivalent formal elements to produce compositions of serial regularity.
Selina Foote also operates within a hard-edged geometric abstraction, but close inspection of her works reveal lightly ruled pencil lines and painterly sections where evidence of the brush remains. Drawing from the works of 19th century women Impressionist painters, Foote subtly distils and refines areas of colour, light and line from these paintings to reveal a set of pictorial givens. The emerging work reacts against the structural remnants of the originals to produce painting radically divergent from its starting point.
Australian artist, John Nixon will enhance this dialogue by using an entire wall as an artwork, installing his individual painted constructions into the space, adding another dimension. Allowing for variation in scale and volume, the selected artworks will be strategically placed on a coloured painted wall to create a strong visual zone engaging both mind and eye. These works typically reference either very simple or complex formal structures. Nixon's method of constructing or building a painting has enabled him to exceed the limits of the rectangle, to create dynamic shape and structure through layering and the accumulation of diverse materials. Through the materiality of the works, the non-objective joins with the concrete and real within an abstract realm. This approach to display is well suited to the context of an art fair. Nixon does not adhere to preconceived ideas about the final look of the show. Instead he chooses to respond and react to the specifics of the location with elements of light, scale, size and colour having a determining effect on the end result. He sees a painting installation "as an intellectual proposition, and as such it can be carried out in-situ in any world city where various local objects and materials are often used in the production of the works for exhibition."