ARRYN SNOWBALL

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BIOGRAPHY

Arryn Snowball has held solo exhibition in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. His work has been included in group exhibitions in Australia, Italy and Japan. He has a Doctorate of Visual Arts from the Queensland College of Art. Snowball was awarded the Meville Hayson Scholarship in 2003, the Redcliffe City Art Prize in 2005 and the British School in Rome Artist residency by the Australia Council in 2013. A survey exhibition of Snowball's work was held at the Caboolture Regional Art Gallery, Queensland in 2016. Snowball's work is held in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia and Artbank, as well as regional and university collections.

ARTIST CV

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PAST EXHIBITIONS

SLACK WATER

SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY 2018 | SEPTEMBER 13 TO 16
BOOTH CO2, FUTURE CONTEMPORARY, CARRIAGEWORKS

ARTIST STATEMENT

This work is about the Pacific Ocean, it’s about fishing, abstract poetry and a peculiar physics, it’s about meaning and the dissolution of being, it is about light and water, sky and horizon, surface and depths.

The Slack Water project is ongoing. It just started in December 2017. It includes so far 77 poems by Nathan Shepherdson, an acclaimed Brisbane poet and a dear friend, three art works on paper, each composed of 150 individual sheets, and paintings.

Nathan and I wanted to make a work about the Pacific Ocean, but the ocean is big, so as a place to start we decided to work from the Fisherman’s Bible: Grant’s Guide to Fishes.

Nathan wrote 77 poems, using Grant’s Guide. Each poem uses only words found in the text on one fish. The poems are powerful, abstract, difficult, beautiful, and the ocean swells within them. I started by painting text from the poems in a similar way. I entered the poems through fragments, cutting them up, taking poetic images - single lines, or phrases, or simply the shapes generated by the letters, and transformed them into painting.

This is not simply an academic exercise. I select the fragments of the poems that I respond to, words that pull at me. The 77 poems are dense and quite abstract, yet they are powerful, filled with associations and energy. The poems build their own universe. My smallest unit is the shape produced by a letter, then a word, a phase, a line, and the greatest unit is a full poem.

Although rarely mentioned, for me, the most powerful image overall is the ocean. It takes me back to fishing on the coast as a kid; disappearing into the colour of the water, the sky, the light, the movement of the tides, the great complexity of the ocean, its power and mystery. For me the ocean is still in the realm of the great unknown, it is what I miss most while living in Berlin.

 

ARTIST PROCESS NOTES

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CONTINUUM

9 APRIL TO 1 MAY 2016

An exhibition of new painting by Arryn Snowball, concurrent with the artist’s survey exhibition at Caboolture Regional Art Gallery. Berlin based Arryn Snowball has held solo exhibitions in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. His work has been included in group exhibitions in Australia, Italy and Japan. Snowball holds a Doctorate of Visual Arts from the Queensland College of Art and was awarded the British School in Rome Artist Residency by the Australia Council in 2013. Snowball’s work is held in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia and Artbank, as well as regional and university collections.

Snowball’s work is concerned with the play between movement and stillness, structure and fluidity, repetition and rhythm. Little here remains solid or definite. The works hover delicately on the edge of abstraction and rarely insist on a meaning or metaphor, but instead open a space for reflection and contemplation. In this way, Snowball’s art reconfigures itself around the impressions it evokes. The paintings become vessels for light. They become an open structure to house thoughts and memories, a bowl that can be filled and emptied and filled again.

ARTIST STATEMENT

…down the road in a mist of rain, it seemed as if the house were founded on the most fragile web of breath and you had blown it. Then you thought that it might not exist at all as built by carpenter’s hands, nor had ever; and it was only an idea of breath breathed out by you who, with that same breath that had blown it, could blow it all away.

William Goyen

 

I should like my house to be similar to that of the ocean wind, all quivering with gulls.

Rene Cazelles

 

My house is diaphanous, but it is not of glass. It is more of the nature of vapour. Its walls contract and expand at my desire. At times I draw them close about me like protective armour… But at others, I let the walls of my house blossom out in their own space, which is infinitely extensible.

Georges Spyridaki

 

you taught me the names of plants

you taught me my name

you taught me the names of plants

in a garden we must obey the patterns

transcribe the light onto the backs of our hands

light possesses light

it teaches chlorophyll to drink

you taught me the names of plants

you taught me my name

threw the first shadows across my eyes

Nathan Shepherdson

 

These are not houses, or paintings of houses. I was led there by thinking about structure and I thought it interesting as a parallel, as a way of talking around the paintings. I suppose it is my hope that painting can act in a different, but similar way. Perhaps at another time I could find an astronomer talking about the light from distant stars and it would also make a certain kind of sense. However, I have called the series House of Breath after the William Goyen novel, I like that the word ‘house’ makes them a little more intimate and breath brings them closer to the body.

Can a painting be a structure to house our thoughts and daydreams? A space for reverie, for the play of light and imagination. A slow space for a gentle beauty and for a philosophy of vulnerable values. A theoretical space with its own sense of logic, of physics, with its own time, its own gravity, its own relationships of meaning. A micro-universe that yet reflects something of this universe we find ourselves in, or perhaps something we find within ourselves. I’d like my painting to be a place to hover between awareness of being and loss of being. A place to reconcile loss and love. A space, not only for communication, but for empathy. Insisting on nothing and suggesting everything.

Arryn Snowball

INSTALLATION

STOCKROOM

NEWS

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ARRYN SNOWBALL ‘SELECTED WORKS’ REVIEWED IN CURRENT NOVEMBER ISSUE OF ART ALMANAC

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ARRYN SNOWBALL’S NEW PUBLICATION IN GINA FAIRLEY ‘ARTSHUB’ ARTICLE

Arts publishing on the rise, thanks to industry chutzpah GINA FAIRLEY With a slew of new artist monographs released over the past month, ArtsHub questions the recent focus on visual arts publishing and shift in trends. ‘Depending on how you look at it, the art-book industry is either in precarious straits or the midst of…

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ARRYN SNOWBALL’S NEW PUBLICATION ‘ARRYN SNOWBALL: SELECTED WORKS’ LAUNCHED AT SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY BY PETER SHARP, SENIOR LECTURER, UNSW

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ARRYN SNOWBALL EXHIBITING WITH NICHOLAS THOMPSON GALLERY AT ‘SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY’ 2018

Nicholas Thompson Gallery is delighted to be returning to the Sydney Contemporary art fair from 13 to 16 September 2018. The gallery will exhibit a solo exhibition of work by Berlin based Australian artist Arryn Snowball and launch a 150 page monograph on the artist’s work produced with the assistance of an Australia Council for…

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ARRYN SNOWBALL ARTIST IN RESIDENCE AT THE MUSEUM OF BRISBANE

Artist-in-Residence: Arryn Snowball  

ARRYN SNOWBALL’S 2016 SURVEY EXHIBITION ‘HOUSE OF BREATH’ AT CABOOLTURE REGIONAL GALLERY REVIEWED IN EYELINE 85 BY JONATHAN MCBURNIE

LINK TO ARTICLE BELOW: http://www.eyelinepublishing.com/eyeline-85/review/arryn-snowball

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