Galeria Kernel | Tess Williams
Tess Williams: Groundwork
After graduating from De Montfort University, Leicester, in 2008 with a BA in Fine Art, Williams went on to complete an MA in Fine Art in 2015 at Central Saint Martins in London, where she currently lives and works. After an early period largely devoted to photography, when she took a keen interest in the material properties of disintegrating urban buildings, she has gradually shifted towards experimentation with the pictorial medium.
Influenced by the mul- timedia versatility of Robert Rauschenberg, the Abstract Expressionism of Mark Rothko, Franz Kline, Clyfford Still and Joan Mit- chell, the post-structural forms of Eric Mack and the post-minimal style of artists like Steven Parrino, Simon Callery and N. Dash, she has forged a recognisable aesthetic corpus made manifest in her sound, coherent creations. Using codes and infrastructures identified with the history of painting such as stretchers, frames, stretched canvases and frontal perspective as her conceptual bedrock, she subjects materials to myriad manipulative processes that reinterpret the traditional limits of the medium from a deconstructive angle, expanding its possibilities in aesthetic artefacts that hover somewhere between painting, sculpture, assemblage and insta- llation.
By revealing and stripping materials down to a zero degree of meaning, Tess Williams rediscovers the singularities of the textile, weaving abstract narratives that record the physical trace of actions performed on fabrica fabric that becomes a textural phenomenological diary, an alternative to the flat images typical of our oversaturated contemporary iconosphere. Sensuality, irregularity, chromatic specificity, depth, spatial concretion and a return to the tactile make her works beautiful experiential objects which, displayed in casual, fleeting formats, hope to resonate with spectators on an emotional and perceptive level.
Tess Williams’s work has appeared in numerous group shows, most notably at Charlie Smith London (2015 and 2016), Galerie Heike Strelow, Frankfurt (2016) and, more recently, Galerie L’Inlassable, Paris (2017). She has also held solo exhibitions at London venues such as the Chelsea Colle- ge of Art (2015), White Conduit Projects (2016) and The Bomb Factory Art Foundation (2017). In 2017 she will exhibit at the Nir Altman Galerie in Munich. In addition to various private collections in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany and Spain, her work can be found in major collections like those of The Corinthia (London), Grosvenor House Park Lane (London) and De Montfort University (Leicester).
Text by Miguel F. Campon
Tess Williams: Groundwork
31 March - 25 May 2017
Images courtesy of Galeria Kernel and Tess Williams