The Greek Gods is a theme that has long inspired the classical work of artists throughout time in all forms – from larger-than-life grand sculptures to the interpretations of the greatest classical realists through the history of art.
Exhibition Launch Party:
Sunday 4th May 2014 2-4pm
Richard Payne, Australian classical modernist artist, has been using this theme to challenge the stricutures of traditional interpretation, and explore the bounds of classical modernism. This artist does not take the heavy, dramatic or austere approach to the pantheon of greek gods by demonstrating the power over the human underclass – Richard uses the narrative of this genre to interpret the human side of the gods, in all their glory; enjoying their relationships with humanity through expressions of colour, movement and emotion.
Born in Melbourne, Australia in 1957, Richard Payne is an ‘emerging artist’ who’s lifetime of classical training and practice as an artist, architectural draftsman and graphic designer informs his line, composition and use of space.
In 2010 Richard moved to Florence, Italy to study the techniques of classical realism at the Florence Academy of Art for two years, thereafter returning to Australia and his modernist roots, using intuition to innovate and knowledge to control his unique visions.
“Classical mythology provides me with the motifs and layering of narrative for the expression of my philosophy on beauty & life” he said. “By reviving these ancient myths, I seek to create fresh works that offer the viewer entry to a unified world of spirituality, positive energy and opt away from their chaotic modern world.
“ Colour and movement are important – I seek the moment in the narrative where the emotions are palpable, the characters full expression, sublime. The viewer takes to each piece their own life story, and through that filter can relate to the human element of these gods. Using light and controlled colour harmonies to increase the luminescence of their realms is critical to assist the viewer to suspend the own thinking as they explore the layering of symbolism and implications of this moment. The compositions are designed to hold the viewer in key places, and then to move them around the piece – to gradually reveal through many viewings further layers…careful balance of the simple and complex, intense colour in a limited pallet.
Classical modernism provides the perfect vehicle to meld both the classical and clean lines of expression. As each subject in the piece is designed, as they come forth they take on a life of their own – much the same as Pygmalion’s statue. As their expression comes forward, their representation can be pared back to its essence, but never enough to take the complete narrative away from the viewer’s involvement.”
Richard’s unique approach talks to both the soul and the intellect. His work is expansive – it pulses with an energy that is intensified and controlled by an artist who has spent a lifetime mastering line, composition, perspective and the dynamic use of intense colour.
Of Gods & Love is an important exhibition, as Payne’s unique approach reveals both surface beauty of the narrative and the inner harmony of Payne’s compositions. This is an artist to watch.