Nonesuch Gully & The Chorus – Kathryn Madill & Dean Venrooy
Veiled mythologies mingle between the works in Nonesuch Gully & The Chorus. Each piece plays out as if a scene in some otherworldly production: characters are shared, locations developed and elements repeated. But while each body of work is linked as a series, the individual pieces hold their own gravity and meaning, displaying a maturity and skill developed over an ongoing exploration of material, technique and thematic concerns.
Carefully layered minute details draw the viewer in close to these worlds. Madill utilises expressive monoprints to evoke movement and theatricality; Venrooy’s delicate hand gives life to natural elements. These are bodies of work that swallow you for a moment.
Venrooy composes an imagined valley from the natural environment surrounding his studio in Governors Bay. There is a balance between the real and envisioned, filtered through the artist’s icons – a kind of fragile transitional space for one to linger in.
The borders of Madill’s work – the book and what could be a stage – emphasise the capture of moments. Dream-like, they mix a gorgeous dread with a quivering and alive darkness. What results are pieces that sink into the page – taking the viewer in with them.
Although mysterious, there is a social life to these works. Venrooy’s birds are never alone in their scenes, often interacting and looking inwards. Madill’s characters observe, judge and loom around the other inhabitants. A chorus watches over a sleeping woman and figures follow one another among darkened landscapes. These internal interactions create a depth to the worlds that the viewer can dip into, peering beneath their surfaces to draw an infinitum of conclusions.