David PlattsPaintings, Drawings, Pastels, Prints.
Sheridan Russell Gallery, 16 Crawford Street, London W1H 1BS
2 to 20 October 2007
"An art of balance, of purity, serenity devoid of troubling or disturbing subject matter .like a comforting influence, a mental balm "
Henri Matisse's dream of what art should be is an apt description of the achievement of David Platts in his first exhibition in London for twenty years entitled 'De Profundis' at the Sheridan Russell Gallery. 2 20 October 2007.
As the title of the exhibition suggests, these are indeed works that have come 'from the very depths of the soul'. After a period of some five years in which he suffered the trials and tribulations of a break-down followed by M.E. and clinical depression, he resumed his painting and has produced this stunning exhibition of over fifty works that cover the last ten years and which have never been exhibited together before.
These works are profoundly contemplative and metaphoric. Industrial coach enamels and household paints (which first made their appearance in his work in the 1960s) are used alongside the more traditional media of watercolour, gouache, oil and acrylic. He works from a premise of 'an order in space' and every stage of the making of the artefact is meticulously controlled. The motif of either single or multiple interlocking shapes is developed with numerous permutations and combinations and nothing is left to chance the 'accident' has no role to play in his work. Through colour, line, form and texture, David Platts expresses profound degrees of feeling, the scale and intensity of which vary in nature as a sonata may vary from a symphony. In short, David Platts has achieved the impossible: making the intangible, tangible. These works are no random abstractions from the concrete world that we inhabit but a distillation of life's experiences rendered in paint the rhythms, the 'quicknesses', the 'stillnesses' which characterize the human condition.
David Platts was born in India in 1940 and came to England in 1947. After leaving school he trained and worked as a commercial artist before attending York School of Art where he was awarded a scholarship to the Royal College of Art. There he won prizes and a prestigious travel scholarship to the United States, Canada and Mexico. In addition to exhibiting in London and the provinces, he has lectured in Fine Art and Design departments of various colleges and universities in the United Kingdom. He currently lives and works in North Yorkshire.