Friday, 10 February 2012

The Magic Theatre Exhibtion

As part of its winter season at The Gallery at NUCA, the University College is delighted to present The Magic Theatre, which includes works by Glyn Brewerton, Course Leader BA Illustration and Rachel Gannon, Illustration Lecturer at Norwich University College of the Arts. This group show progresses from NUCA to the Royal College of Art in London.

The Magic Theatre Collective

Rooted in the Royal College of Art philosophy of intuitive drawing and image making, the group and its international guests all share a passion for drawing in its broadest sense and utilise many forms of expression from pictures to prose. Much of the work is visual storytelling and without a linear, literary or literal text - the images evoke an element of ambiguity.

Angela Hogg, Sketchbook

The varied works in this touring show are a mix of personal and contextual responses to the myriad themes of myth, magic, habitat and landscape - both inner and outer. These include Quentin Blake’s unpublished personal drawing Women with Creature, Audrey Niffenegger’s haunting drawings and new personal works by graphic design author and critic Jessica Helfands.

As human beings we are receptive to the most abstract of visual images just as we relate to sound and music. Light, form and colour create atmospheric nuances and prompt our senses, emotions, memories and experiences. These are complex optical and neurological processes but
are also much too free and elusive to be trapped by scientific theory or language alone.

Paul Slater, Campsite Cavalcade

As individuals we carry unique formative experiences and bring personal knowledge, feelings and bias to the images, paintings and photography we view. Yet it is often
a subconscious recognition or sensation, a kind of déjà vu that triggers the bond.
'Every man or woman is not only him or herself; for he or she is also the unique, particular, always significant and remarkable point where the phenomena of the world intersect once and for all and never again.' (Hermann Hesse, 1958)

This frequency has a rogue antenna and an elusive reception - and if this magical reception is to transmit at all then the viewers empathy switch has to be switched on. In this digital and anxious age this subtle reception is often sadly switched to standby or sits 'out of tune’. Indeed time and 'being' has to be spent in order for the passage to occur - so please viewer, take your time.

In Four Quartets T.S. Eliot wrote: ‘We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place as if for the first time.’
Self expression through drawing and indeed also photography allows the pictorial translation of often transient passing ideas and concepts and elusive feelings. Understanding and trusting our own perceptions intuitively is a key element to making work that is not too self conscious or 'fashioned'.

Mack Manning, Curator

The Magic Theatre
The Gallery at NUCA
Tuesday 14th February – Saturday 25th February
Open 12 – 5pm (closed Sunday and Monday)
Exhibition open to the public, admission free.

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