The Window Paintings of Stephen Skidmore with a poem by John Bevis
Ballybeg Grange Clonmel Tipperary Ireland
Galerie Hubert Winter
Bridge Gasse 17, 1070 Wien, Austria
Edition no: A.P.
Coracle Press / The Window Paintings / Stephen Skidmore and John Bevis
The Window Paintings series of Stephen Skidmore, made in 2012 and 2013, are acrylic on canvas, and for the most part 30 x 45 cm, with the occasional painting 20 x 46 cm. They follow The Rain Paintings of the previous years, and both series were made in his studio in Avenue Crescent, Acton, West London. The Window Paintings, with the poem by John Bevis in response to them, is published at the time of exhibition of the series at Galerie Hubert Winter from 26th February to April 11th 2015.
"The Window Paintings follow on from Stephen Skidmore’s exquisite series of The Rain Paintings, which looked down from the window of his bedsit – or ‘studio apartment’ – to the uneventful street below, its pavements and parked cars and blurry hints of apartment walls. Sometimes the focus strayed no further than the drops of rain fused to the window glass itself. Now, a new series of paintings looks up from the same viewpoint to treetops, rooflines and clouds, in almost colour-free compositions that re-examine the scarce variations of a view both mundane and ominous of the suburban dormitory.
The poem written to accompany the paintings is in six sections. It has a jagged, almost improvised quality which marks a departure from the author’s previous essays. Fragments of past lives of occupants of the room are imagined in a series of interactions between the view from the window, whether studied or glimpsed, and what is going on inside, in a montage described by Simon Cutts as ‘a cold-war narrative’."
‘… one integrity, two symmetry, three chaos
his latest effort toward constructing the simplest model
fit to accommodate the window’s view…’
Coracle is a small publishing press directed by writer and artist Erica Van Horn and poet, artist and editor Simon Cutts. The consistent intention has been to involve artists, editors, poets and writers in the creation of an eclectic synthesis of word, image and print that could flourish in book form through exploration of metaphor, allusion, paradox and irony. It was initially started from a small farm between the hills of South Tipperary, Ireland in 1996. Mostly based in London from the 1970s, as a publisher, gallery, and a space for books, ‘workfortheeyetodo’ was the last bookshop-based project there, held in the mid-1980s. Coracle now continues more remotely as a printer-publisher, employing many of the devices and formats of hypothetical publishing inherent in the small press. Inevitably, much of the content of the publishing is of the nature of the book itself, in both critical and playful dimensions. The content almost always contains a residue of poetry, and a concern with the mechanisms of the book as a manifestation of the poem itself.