In this exhibition, we see Connolly’s ongoing explorations in repetitive layering, cutting, peeling and revealing. Paint, once cut and removed from its structural support reveals residues of its own activity and the alchemical transformation of the layering process. The artist investigates how materials can ‘make themselves’ through handling and process – i.e. the chemical combination in the layering of materials creates its own journey and its own rules, one the artist can’t fully control and so she has to allow the material and its possibilities lead her to a certain extent. Once she begins the cutting and revealing process, the outcome is never clearly defined.
M, B, C / Neon the large suspended canvas, moves painting beyond the wall and into the sculptural domain of floor and ceiling. In this work the painting holds and occupies the gallery space, inviting the viewer to both see and experience painting beyond the two-dimensional plane through its ‘frame/ing’ and methods of display.
In addition, we see a new series of works (2 – 10), a departure for Connolly, in which she has taken other artists’ palettes to create a new paint skin. Using a mix of gel and acrylic she lifts the surface of the palette, and creates a reproduction of the ‘traces of an (the artists) activity’, paintings both with and without the artist’s hand. The palette becomes a form of ready-made, representing the residue, the overlooked and disregarded decision making and labour created by other artists. With this series, we are invited to question the ownership, authorship and archiving of other artists’ palettes. Connolly is pushing the boundaries and challenging the the traditional uses of the medium of paint. She is interested in how the work may pose questions for the viewer as to whether it is painting or whether it is sculpture or another form of making.