Page 3 - Sharon Hall: Meeting Points
P. 3

Studio Visit

            Hall has a strange relation to exactitude, as always. Her intuitive use of risk and
            knowledge, as well as her continuing contrary fight against visual logic, creates
            a sense of progression in terms of decisions made during the working process.
            Instead of producing an iconic image, however, Hall waits for accumulative effect,
            or effects, to work, just about. Such an approach to time, allows the irregular
            broken triangle to exist, with the artist still wondering if this might work. Working
            within the apparent confines of physical space, the artist, does break out at times,
            with the stretcher and recent watercolours, for instance, mimicking an extended
            cinema screen that curves away from us.

            While there is something calming about the artist being openly present in the work
            the rationale of language soon breaks down, nonetheless. While a certain type
            of hard-edged painting will try to deny the fallible nature of hand or fact, even the
            masking tape here helps to act as supporter of process rather than hidden compo -
            nent of artifice. Hall indulges lightly in a build-up of intelligent, non-volumetric
            areas of soft, diffuse, sometimes powdery colour, that seem to go beneath or
            become part of the surface. At times the paint appears to be no more than a deli -
            cately expanded stain or filter. Moving through, however, apparently quest ioning
            the situation, Hall renders another area strangely opaque. The undeliberate
            surface of the green triangle, for instance, which sits awkwardly in front, with the
            ‘used’ or ‘found’ colour absorbed in the surface next door, forces the eye to adjust
            to differing circumstances. Hovering or sitting on top, the opaque section almost
            mimics the faux nature of the whole endeavour. Hall remains somewhat anti
            expressive in her use of paint. She has, for decades, been making independent
            work which deals openly with received ideas of language, reproduction, and the
            huge gamut of expectation and association that comes with visual language.

            Each and any real image lies in the role that is more tantalisingly fact than illusion,
            starting with a number of decisions made ‘as I go along’, Hall utilises an open-
            ended pull of precarity. A matter of finding where things might seem to surprise
            or confuse, in each imbedded, complete painting seems to render the familiar
            unfam iliar, or the other way round. While Hall’s apparently contrary notions might
            suggest a campaign of extensive wrong-footing, this is not the point. Pink and
            yellow, so deep but filling the space, start to represent a state where colour
            is nothing other than what it is. Suggestive of a place that exists in much earlier
            painting, the work creates a strong sense of actual existence. Odd things
            do happen, and things are able to remain still, in a fixed state, perhaps.

            Sacha Craddock  April 2024
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