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Sophie von Hellermann's exhibition at Pilar Corrias in London (A Midsummer Night's Dream, 13 July–8 August 2020) presents new paintings inspired by Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, made in Kent where she now lives and works.

Sophie von Hellermann, Methought I Was Enamoured of an Ass (2020). Acrylic on canvas. 140 x 160 cm. Courtesy the artist and Pilar Corrias.

Von Hellermann stated, 'for the exhibition I kept thinking about all of these characters running around in this madness of Midsummer and losing themselves in the process. Painting them in this very time of sickness and isolation with the images that were around me I felt this urgency to paint and became very inspired by my own dream-like experience of the English countryside.'

Her loose style—applying the paint quickly in large colourful swathes—allows us to be whisked off into swirling scenes of dance and chase, set amidst the backdrop of her own fantastical version of bucolic landscape.

Sophie von Hellermann, The piece in the piece (2020). Acrylic on canvas. 220 x 280 cm. Courtesy the artist and Pilar Corrias.

Rich earth and green tones are lit up by vibrant flashes of orange fire or a red dress as our eyes dance across the canvas in wonder at the expressive actions of her figures. These are joyful paintings, transporting us to another place—whether fictional or lived—providing us with escapism from our current confinement; something we are all craving right now.—[O]

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