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3 June 2023 – 12 August 2023

Helene Appel creates images that straddle the threshold between realism, sculpture and abstraction. Using paints and different techniques allow the close emulation of each individual subject she paints. The materials she uses, such as oil, watercolour or encaustic, start to resemble the object itself, giving the painted object a physical and three-dimensional presence. 

Depicting ordinary objects from everyday life, her work sees the inherent aesthetic qualities of trees, seashores, fishing nets, headlights and loose folds of fabric. Whilst never avoiding the less pleasant details of domestic life, we may also encounter discarded vegetable peelings ready to be thrown onto the compost pile or a kitchen sink full to the brim of murky washing up water.

Through the process of painting, the artist activates the objects she portrays, empowering them with a sense of autonomy or agency. In this sense, Appel’s paintings can be understood as portraiture, where the objects depicted belong to their own non-anthropocentric world

This exhibition will feature key works from Appel’s career alongside a new series of paintings inspired by the streets of Rochdale.

Among Trees, Among Sand Grains will tour to the Williamson Art Gallery & Museum.