george byrne

Local Division

10 – 28 February 2016

Opening 10 February 6-8pm
Olsen Irwin Gallery

I recently met George here in Sydney (but have followed him on instagram for ages) I was instantly drawn to his work. In true coincidence and connectivity we have mutual friends in LA (also coincidentally another favourite artist Paul Davies and his wife Sarah) I love the optimistic, colourful and graphic moments George captures, of course I love LA but there is something magical about his point of view.

George Byrne’s L.A. series ‘Local Division’ resonates with a quiet, deductive intensity. Borrowing from the clean, vivid clarity of modernist painting, he also references the New Topographics photography movement via a subject matter firmly entrenched in the urban everyday. Byrne’s oeuvre is to spin L.A.’s most disposable architecture and redundant landscapes into seismic moments. He seeks the subliminal and sublime in the everyday.

Born in Sydney in 1976, Byrne graduated from Sydney College Of The Arts in 2001, travelled extensively, and then settled in Los Angeles in 2010 where he has been focusing on his photographic practice.

Byrne started using Instagram as a visual scrapbook in 2013, his gallery (@george_byrne) has evolved to become an important and popular extension of his broader art practice reaching over 40,000 followers.

George Byrne photographs Los Angeles in colour, outdoors & usually in blinding sunlight. Figures occasionally float by like ghosts through washed out pastel plains. Streetscapes become two-dimensional, angular cutouts. Shadows dissect. A handrail rests poetically in space by virtue of perspective and its own simple form. For Byrne, any subject matter is fair game so long as it’s conducting light, everything evokes. Composition is king.

Born in Sydney, Byrne graduated from Sydney College Of The Arts in 2001, travelled extensively, and then settled in Los Angeles in 2010. He started out studying painting but in his late teens discovered a love of photography. He says his early creative inspirations came from Pierre Mondrian, Richard Diebenkorn, David Hockney & Jeffrey Smart, all artists who would go on to deconstruct their environments with compositional exactness. Only later did he discover Walker Evan, William Eggleston, Stephen Shore, Andreas Gursky,

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Byrne’s habit is to spin LA’s most disposable architecture and redundant landscapes into seismic moments, he seeks the epic in the everyday and revels in the irony that is beautifying the unbeautiful. His images reflect a sense of stillness often echoed in Edward Hopper’s own investigations into the modern human condition; the ideal vs. the reality, the emptiness that can lie at the heart of a busy modern life, and those questions that often rest uncomfortably between the lines.

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here are two of my favourites from the show

Temple St 2015
147.3 x 119.4cm
archival pigment print
edition of 5 and 2 APs

1. Temple St 2015

 

Motel Grande 2014
147.3 x 119.4cm
archival pigment print
edition of 5 and 2 APs

2. Motel Grand 2014

 

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