Nina Chua and Daniel Silver
30 October 2022–29 January 2023
Castlefield Gallery presents a lively and exuberant exhibition of the work of Nina Chua and Daniel Silver, part of an ongoing series of two person shows.
Chua invited Silver, an artist working at the forefront of contemporary figurative sculpture, to show a group of recent ceramic figures alongside a new set of her large-scale abstract drawings on paper.
Both artists work with materials in an intuitive, exploratory way leaving expression to the material itself. Silver’s figures seem to emerge from the clay, which plays a significant part in shaping the work, while the form of Chua’s drawings is determined as much by the qualities of paper and her use of marker pens as by her own hand.
Yet above all, bringing the work of Chua and Silver together emphasises something deeply human rooted in this manipulation of materials - in the physicality of making a mark or shaping the clay - that connects the work beyond its respective formal concerns and the notions of the abstract or figurative. The incidental similarities and contrasts between each artist’s approach offer an incentive to think afresh about the ‘touch of the artist’s hand’ and the traces it leaves, not merely on the surfaces of their works, but also on our thoughts and perceptions as we view the work.
'...the pen and the paper have much to express and my job as an artist is to facilitate their potential. In making the work, I try not to control it' – Nina Chua
'I think all my interest in archaeology and work that was made a thousand years ago, thousands of years ago, still carries that humanity in it, and I hope my objects will carry this in them in times to come.' – Daniel Silver
Castlefield Gallery has supported and followed Chua’s work over several years. She has taken part in numerous exhibitions at the gallery including: LAUNCH PAD: Meanwhile See This (2012), AND A 123 (2017) and Oh, it is easy to be clever if one does not know all these questions (2018). In 2013 Chua was commissioned to develop a public artwork for the gallery’s external facade.