Archetypes is a new body of work and exhibition from Fiksate artists, Jessie Rawcliffe and Dr. Suit, exploring the integration of portraiture and abstraction in a series of collaborative works, bringing together each artist’s stylistic and material approaches. Examining how compositional approaches can emphasise, obscure or reveal details, Rawcliffe and Dr. Suits invite the viewer into the images, the layering of abstraction over figurative aspects compelling them to step back or move in to consider and review formal elements of colour, texture and shadow, asking questions around the subjects of these new work and their resonating emotive qualities.
Dr. Suits confirms that their initial idea, ‘seemed like a natural combination of our work, balanced enough that we were both equally represented in the outcome. Jessie sent me a few images, I made some draft compositions and sent back around six options. I was happy with them. We worked in our studios and sent each other progressive updates. As soon as I saw the two layers combined to create the image, I wanted to do another one straight away. That first painting became our “archetype”, which would go on to inform the remainder of the works in the show. From that point, I became more excited about making collaborative pieces, exploring different ways we could merge portraiture with abstraction. After making the initial piece it was obvious we had plenty of ideas and enthusiasm to keep going and the momentum hasn’t stopped’.
Rawcliffe further emphasises that this approach to collaborating with another artist allows you to view your work from someone else's perspective and consider your own process critically. ‘You tend to stop and question why you make certain decisions while you’re allowing yourself to open to ideas from another person. They tend to see things you don’t. Nath [Dr Suits] and I have spent time developing our own styles, but collaborating has enabled us to bring together what we each know about our mediums and make works that capture both our perspectives.’
And why is the exhibition titled Archetypes? Dr Suits recalls that it took a while to determine the show title. ‘Once we had a clear direction for the work and process we decided Archetypes seemed like a perfect title because it resonates on many levels. An archetype can be any of the following: A statement, pattern of behaviour, prototype, "first" form, or a main model that other statements, behaviours, and objects copy, emulate, or "merge" into.’ In addition, New York writer Caroline Myss also adds; ‘archetypes are the vocabulary of intuition, and the more familiar we are with them the more clearly we will resonate with our own intuition’.
Jessie Rawcliffe and Dr. Suit, Archetypes,
Fiksate, 54 Hawdon Street, Sydenham
4 November – 3 December
- Jessie Rawcliffe and Dr. Suit at Fiksate gallery and studios
- Jessie Rawcliffe and Dr. Suit, Between Self and the World, acrlic and spray paint in layered board and glass