SELMA PARLOUR

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I make oil paintings that appear as though they are drawn, dyed, or printed. I conceive of my practice through a syntactical lens contriving a self-styled coda to historic abstract painting in order to reassess its assorted theoretical proclamations and in/extrinsic conventions. I'm perhaps known for my units of 'back-lit' colour, shaded bands, diagrammatic space, and my abstract-paintings-of-photography's-installation-shot-of-abstract-painting.

 

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'She layers her paint with great patience and skill to achieve a luminous ground, with as much light trickery as a Van Eyck or a Rothko. As a result her colours punch out, in a wild range of shades from pretty pastel to harshly acidic.' – Mark Sheerin, FAD magazine, 2020

'Parlour's previous use of what could be images of full frames is now merely implied by what look like photographic crops of them. The paradoxical idea comes to mind that these paintings are details of themselves. There is plenty here for eye and brain.' – Paul Carey-Kent, Saturation Point, 2018

Selma Parlour, 2018

'The result is an illusory, tromp l'oeil-like effect that works against the eye's instinctual efforts in finding points of focus. All paintings need to be seen in person to be properly appreciated, of course, but that's especially the case with Parlour's work, which purposely subverts the optics of a camera lens.' – Taylor DaFoe, Artnet News, 2018

'Parlour's paintings carry colour without volume. Maintaining a relation to printmaking, the build-up is tonal, stained, almost as if in a photograph, with the sense of hands off as well as hands on. A layered levelling of colour, where the artist appears to have pulled the canvas, as if a shroud, out of liquid in a gesture of reversed negativity.' – Sacha Craddock, 2017

ES magazine, 2019

The Times, 2016

'I am puzzled by the sense of this being a corner or a quadrant. In what context might one see only this part of either a pyramid or a window? Photography comes to mind, the camera frame characteristically cropping objects in this way. And there is something about the colour quality, thinly applied hues, with the white surface behind giving them brilliance, which is reminiscent of a photograph or a computer screen.' – Andy Parkinson, Patterns that Connect, 2017

'Our edgy attempt to impose perceptual equanimity is hereby challenged.' – Sandra Gibson, Nerve magazine, 2016

'Parlour's pictorial space is impossible. It breaks all the rules and confounds all expectations, demanding to be read from multiple perspectives rather than a single viewpoint.' – Richard Davey, 2016

'In delicate, precise paintings referencing iconic architectural geometries, Parlour's canvases are cosmic windows that compress time to merge the forms of present and past.' – Cathryn Drake, Artforum, 2015

'A series of extremely subtle colours have been applied with the exactitude of an illuminator decorating a manuscript. The results are as pleasing as a perfect equation and the acronym QED (quod erat demonstrandum), usually appended to the proof of a theorem, would not be inappropriate.' – Sarah Kent, The Arts Desk, 2011

 

Bio

Selma Parlour (b. Johannesburg, S.A. 1976). Awards: Arts Council England Creative Development Award (2020); 'Mark Rothko Memorial Trust Artist-in-Residence Award' (2018); 'Sunny Dupree Family Award for a Woman Artist', the Summer Exhibition, the Royal Academy of Arts, London (2017); and the John Moores Painting Prize (2016, prizewinner). Other notable awards are her artist residency at Dio Horia, Athens and Island of Mykonos, Greece (Invited, 2015), and a runner-up award from the Arts Foundation, UK (2014). During her doctoral studies at Goldsmiths, University of London, Selma Parlour received a Research Support Award (2012), and went on to complete her PhD in Art in 2014. That same year her work was selected for Thames and Hudson’s international competition and publication '100 Painters of Tomorrow'. Exhibitions include: 'Activities for the Abyss', Pi Artworks, London (2019, solo); 'Upright Animal', curated by Sacha Craddock, Pi Artworks, London (2018, solo); 'Parlour Games', Marcelle Joseph Projects, the House of St Barnabas, London (2016, site-specific, solo); MOT International, London (2012, solo); 'Selma Parlour & Yelena Popova', Horton Gallery, New York (2012); and Bloomberg New Contemporaries, ICA, London (2011). Collections include the Saatchi Gallery, London.

 
Contact  
Please send enquires to: Images available from:
london@piartworks.com Artimage
   
   
London Athens
   
Pi Artworks Dio Horia
55 Eastcastle Street info@diohoria.com
London, W1W 8EG  
+44 207 6378403
   

studio 2017

 

 

studio 2014

 

 

 
 

© Selma Parlour 2020