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Published in Wall Street Journal, 22 March 2012
Callum Innes is best known for what critics dub “unpainting,” and he has collaborated on exhibits with such non-painters as novelist Colm Tóibin. But for an abstract, boundary-crossing artist, his reflections on art can sound almost traditional.
“I like the idea of beauty,” he says. “I see nothing wrong with the beautiful, for things to have a rightness about them.”
His first solo exhibition in Asia, at Edouard Malingue Gallery in Hong Kong, recently opened. The 1995 Turner Prize finalist shared his thoughts on seeing sound and the biggest problem with art.
Published in The Financial Times, August 18-19 2007
‘Innes shows that painting need not be restricted to making marks – subtracting them is a valid exercise too. At first, these works, with their organised, coloured squares, seem Mondrian-esque, but while Mondrian was concerned with the journey away from figuration, Innes is concerned with the journey from his blank canvas.’
Published in The Spectator, March 31 2007
Despite Innes’s sensitive use of colour elsewhere, the outstanding paintings in this exhibition are monochromatic. ‘Two Identified Forms’, 1995, ‘Three Identified Forms’, 1993 (Tate Gallery), and ‘Monologue Seven’, 2003, encapsulate the artist’s ideas about ‘fragility and flow’ and achieve a veil of shifting impressions and presences.
Published in The Observer, March 11 2007
‘… the exhibition’s climax is to be found in the final gallery: a series of canvases entitled Exposed Painting, Dioxazine Violet. This is mature work; it has a real sense of authority and not only because Innes has used a paint colour that brings papal robes irresistibly to mind. I love the way these works talk to each other, each of them subtly different from the last. They form an echo chamber of colour and mood. One half of the painting shouts to another, but all that comes back - after Innes has set about it with his oily chemical - is a kind of ghostly cry. Stare at them for long enough and their murkiest corners start to resemble a shroud imprinted with the memory of what lay on it. Or perhaps this is just an over-the-top way of saying that their image stays with you long after you have left them.’
Published in Oxford Times, February 15 2007
(Callum Innes’s) paintings, which are the result of repeated application and removal of paint from the canvas, are often admired for their enigmatic and meditative quality. Many suggest they have a deep spiritual quality too.
Published in Oxford Times, February 2007
The result (Innes) obtains in the untitled picture featuring shellac is quite remarkable. It comes about by drawing on the oppositional qualities of shellac and paint to make luminously associative imagery. While the dark spots in this work appear to be as randomly dispersed as anything Jackson Pollock may have produced, they are in fact carefully manipulated into place - and to great effect.
Published in Reading Evening Post, January 25 2007
Published in Art Monthly, November 2006
There are moments of pure physical pleasure and spatial seduction to be found in Innes’s raw surfaces. The imagination may wander and make comparisons with landscapes, yet we are reaching for a world within a flat plane, which Innes continuously reminds us by forcing the process towards us in his literal titles.
Published in The Independent, January 2005
Published in Urthona, Winter 2003
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