Bosse & Baum, London
Luke Burton: The Sun Writ Large
Bosse & Baum is pleased to present Sun Writ Large, a solo installation encompassing a new series of paintings and vitreous enamel works. The exhibition continues Burton’s critical exploration of material and aesthetic culture through poignant iconography and painting as an expanded field.
The five oil and acrylic paintings each depict a Baroque fountain in a field at night. Their impossible plumes of water depict alternately comic and grave forms of communication and power – writing, doodles, telephone cords and judge’s wigs. The compositions are infused with an acute sense of stillness and silence, with a distant horizon line below a cloudy sky.
The vitreous enamel works expand on the conversation around objecthood and iconography in dialogue with the paintings. These works reflect, visually and conceptually, the world inhabited by the fountains, but as if the paintings have been dispersed, fragmented and refracted through a glass prism. These objects recall the historical painting medium of the miniature as much as votive offerings and ancient artefacts. Burton started working with enamelling during a residency in Athens in 2019, during which he encountered the historical medium of Ex-Voto objects that use an ancient technique whereby powdered glass is fired at high temperatures in a kiln onto copper substrates. Their arrangement in the space suggests both an open system of interpretation but also one that allows for specific connections between individual works.
The enamel miniatures and fountains inhabit a world that feels familiar and recognisable at the same time as appearing artificial and constructed. Symbolic associations of power, grandeur and prosperity are undercut with an atmosphere of ambivalence and alienation within a magical and yet unsettling, solitary realm.
About the artist:
Luke Burton (b.1983, London) lives and works in London. He has an ongoing interest in how symbolism operates across decorative visual culture and questions the relationship between craft, ornament and fine art in relation to taste, objecthood and materiality within painting. In addition to more conventional modes of painting, Burton is also interested in seeing painting as an expanded field, specifically in his use of seemingly anachronistic media such as folding screens or vitreous enamels. These contrasting modes also show Burton’s interest in the idea of scale in relation to painting: the scale of architecture, the human scale, and the scale of the miniature or handheld. They ask how these various scales create a physical and psychic space for intimacy, alienation, empathy and privilege,
Burton recently had solo exhibitions at Gallery Woong, Seoul (2022), Bosse&Baum, London (2020), A-DASH, Athens (2019), and Union Gallery, London (2019). Selected group exhibitions include: Alkinois Residency Exhibition, Athens (2022), T.J Boulting, London (2022), Dinner Table, San Mei Gallery, London (2021), White Crypt Project Space, London (2021), KIAF, Gallery Woong, Seoul (2020) and Preview 2020: Bosse & Baum x Damien & The Love Guru x Clima, online (2020). Burton was the Visiting Fellow and Artist-in-Residence at Girton College, Cambridge University in 2019-20. He will be an Abbey Fellow in Painting at British School in Rome in 2023.
About the gallery:
Bosse & Baum was founded in 2014 by Alexandra Warder and Lana Churchill. The gallery occupies a 700 sq. ft. unit in the postindustrial Bussey Building, in Peckham, South East London, and is expanding into online spaces. Bosse & Baum is a commercial gallery seeking an active role in shaping art discourse by giving a platform to contemporary positions; representing an international roster of emerging artists whose work challenges dominant historical narratives and is socially engaged. We work to facilitate broader social access to art and contribute to the wider critical conversation on contemporary art through a public programme of exhibitions, talks and performances. We encourage inclusive participation and conversation within the gallery, whilst supporting the growth of the gallery’s artists into a broader dialogue that includes private and institutional collections.