Cob Gallery is proud to present a duo exhibition of works by Cat Roissetter and Tahmina Negmat for Artissima 2020. Both artists lend distinctive voices to, and challenge the seeming conventions of both painting and drawing.
Roissetter and Negmat’s works are brought together by way of comparing and contrasting their approaches to the application of unusual or found materials in and across their individual practices. Meanwhile, the comparison of these two artists for Artissima 2020 creates tensions between what is considered beautiful and what is considered grotesque. The mixed media, material rich works on display offer stark contrasts between the pristine and the crude and creates heightened mutability between allure and repulsion; brutality and grace; dream and nightmare.
On first inspection, contrasts are found in the seeming fragility of Roissetter’s drawings with the impastoed and sculptural weightiness of Negmat’s paintings. However, the similarities extend beyond formalistic comparisons of surface and texture.
What is strikingly similar in their practices, is a shared starting point - that being the degradation of traditional or crude materials and an obsessiveness of application. During their respective creative processes, these materials undergo the alchemical and, in their excessiveness both in layering and form, their processes emerge as gateways to beauty.
Both artists call on a wide spectrum of historical and personal source material- be it literature, folklore, illustration, personal memory, poetry and pornography, blending and layering these seemingly disparate sources to create their works. As such, the works arguably can be described as assemblages - both of physical and source materials.
Roissetter and Negmat are indebted to many techniques akin to Surrealism, and the results of their work are driven by the unconscious creative act. This labour intensive catharsis undergone by each artist, gives way to a similarity of fluctuation between the figurative and the abstract in the works. Where Roissetter works into her drawings as a means slowly break down the figurative into the, albeit bodily, abstract, Negmat works up her paintings to achieve the same.
Cat Roissetter's drawings, both large and small scale, are are built from processes which include the layering of home made carbon papers, graphite and crayon set on paper torn from larger sheets and from books, which she sluices with cooking oil before she applies her drawn line. Meanwhile, Negmat exhibits a range of works built from found objects, studio detritus and set within materials such as Terracotta and plaster. Included in the presentation is a large scale work on felt by Negmat, created specifically for Artissima 2020.