Giles Eldridge

Introductory text

For more information -
Watercolour and collage

D é t o u r n e m e n t :

Paintings of paintings, drawings of objects, landscapes, portraits, pictures of sculpture, ethnographic references, abstraction, paintings of architecture…spheres and cubes.... photo-collage, photographs, combinations, hybrids and texts. In other words a cacophony of modernist tropes and painting conventions quoted ad infinitum using inconsistent and varying modes. The content of each image is not necessarily the point of interest - rather it is the difference between things that is being presented that is the centre of attention; the non-visible thing in-between. The individual images of are nothing.

The following images are a selection from 100's in the studio. All works are small (circa A3 or less)
Watercolour on mountboard
Oil on paper
Oil on paper
Oil on canvas
Double portrait, graphite and coloured pencil on paper
Oil on canvas
Oil on canvas
Oil on canvas
Graphite on paper
Acrylic on Louisiana catalogue photographic plate
Coloured pencil on paper
Various media on paper and canvas
Oil on canvas sheet
Acrylic paint on photograph
Coloured pencil on paper
Gouache on photograph
Ink, gouache and coloured pencil on paper
Film still
Exhibition installation, GEST, Piatra Neamț Museum of Art, 2019
Gouache on paper
Oil on canvas
Gouache on back of envelope
Ink on paper
Gouache on printed page
Oil on canvas
Acrylic on photo
Watercolour on paper
Oil on canvas
Oil on canvas
Oil on canvas sheet
Gouache on photograph
I make a continuing body of visual elements - drawing, photocollage, paintings, photographs, collected images and hybrids. These 'works' are then used to make temporary and contingent installations; these articulations are the work proper. The location of the work is situated somewhere within the differences between images even though each picture remains discreet and separate. Thus rather than dealing with a substantial body of 'works' the practice handles ideas around inconsistency, variabilty, movement, fluidity and negation. These works form a body of water rather than an archive - nothing is dated or titled, there is no necessarily significant content or meaning within each picture. The location of the work proper could be said to exist outside the pictures, i.e. no individual picture can sum up the Studio practice, the work proper only comes into being when it is shown in the varying contexts of different installations. The important aspect is the relationship between items, which produces a space for reading.

The images used to make the drawings, paintings etc. all come from existing references such as photographs of paintings, events, objet d'art and so on, articulated in varying styles of execution. Alongside these pictures are works of improvised abstraction derived from a modernist methodology. I think of these as pseudo-abstraction or abstract paintings of the idea of abstract painting.

It is a discourse of fragmentation. What is between, simultaneously connects and separates; it is a continual circular movement. Content and narrative possibilities are subjugated. Meaning does not even come into it. Irregularities and inconsistency are encouraged. Political potential is implicit.

Oil on canvas
Oil on canvas sheet
Ink and gouache on paper
Marker and gouache on paper
Gouache on paper
Ink and coloured gel on paper
Acrylic on cardboard
Graphite on paper
Graphite and gouache on grid paper
Oil on canvas
Ink and coloured pencil on paper
Coloured pencil on paper


Giles Eldridge

Born in Sheffield, England, 1965

Lived in London, 1995 - 2014

Now living in București, România

Art Education

Sheffield City Polytechnic, UK, 1990 – 1993 BA (Hons) 2:1 Fine Art – Painting

Selected Exhibitions - Solo

Fără titul : Salon55, Bucharest, 2017

The Sea (a sea) : A5 Gallery, Bucharest, 2016

What happens if nothing happens : Vlad Basalici's Last Archive project, Gallery Tranzit, Bucharest, 21st Dec. 2015

Gold : Isolation Room / Gallery Kit, St. Louis, USA, 2011

Black : Gimpel Fils and The Agency Gallery, London, 2011

Above the Lunar surface : Nordisk Kunst Plattform, Brusand, Norway, 2010

Scratch against silence slow : Agency Gallery, London, 2010

Including doing nothing : Gimpel Fils Gallery, London, 2008

Non-Isotropic Drawings : Bloc Space, Sheffield, England, 2006

Atelier Gilles : Hat on Wall Gallery, London, 2003

Don't paint that gun at me : Tablet Gallery, London, 2000

Selected Exhibitions – Group

Tenant #1, On Distance/s, 19 Doors Gallery, Bucharest, 2019

GEST, Dialogical graphics with Sylvia Trăistariu : Piatra Neamț Museum of Art, Romania, 2019

BEING MOUNTAINS, BEING SEAS : Lateral ArtSpace, Cluj, Romania, 2017

Recollection : with Frederick Bell, Dawn Woolley and Steven Scott, Ruimte Morguen Gallery, Antwerp, 2014

Photo and Print : selected by John Stezaker, Charlie Dutton Gallery, London, 2013

Trajector Intermezzo : Art Brussels project, hotel Bloom, Belgium, 2013

Again, a Time Machine, make the dead look living : Book Works' archive touring show : The Showroom, London, Torpedo, Oslo and White Columns, New York, 2012

Ship in the ocean : with Sadie Murdoch, Deptford X, Gallery Plots, London 2010

The Library of Babel : 176 Zabludowicz collection, London, 2010

Downstairs review Part 1 : Gimpel Fils, London, 2010

Faydun Bites : curated by Charlie Danby, Agency Gallery, London, 2009

Art Futures : Bloomberg SPACE, London, 2008

The Golden Record : Collective Gallery, Edinburgh, 2008

Peer Esteem : Five Years Gallery, London, 2007

Ausstellung : with Manfred Michl, Werketage Berlin, 2006

SVO4 : Studio Voltaire, London, 2004

Cast by inertia and the dorsal fin : W139 gallery, Amsterdam, 2000

Selected Projects + collaborations

What happens when something happens, text for Kristin Wenzel's installation The Near and the Elsewhere, Suprainfinit gallery, Bucharest, 2020

The Lure Of Gold, text for Kjersti Vetterstad's multidisciplinary project,
Gallery Knipsu, Bergen, Norway, 2019

Techno Transa Body Beats, dance project, National Dance Centre, Bucharest, 2019

Studio ideas, Lecture and Workshop within the graphics dept. UNArte, Bucharest, 2018

Fete cu idei [Băieți și picturi] - Girls with ideas [Boys and painting]: curatorial project with Delia Popa at Lateral ArtSpace Cluj and ODD, Bucharest, Romania, 2016

Caii Manâncā anason : performative project with Iulia Sima and Georgiana Dobre at Homefest, Bucharest, 2016

Whisky that would benefit from a splash of water : performative dialogue with Ioana Gheorghiu, at Make a Point, Bucharest, 2014

Residency with Bucharest AiR, 2013

Residency in Cluj, Romania, 2010

Residency at Pilotprojekt, Gropiusstadt, Berlin, 2009

Residency on Langeland island, Denmark, 2007

Residency at ECC Ateliers, Berlin, 2006

Selected Publications

The Library of Babel / In and out of place, Ed. Anna-Catharina Gebbers,
Zabludowicz collection, London, 2010

The Happy Hypocrite , Issue 1, Ed. Maria Fusco,
Book Works, London, 2008

Celeste Art Prize exhibition catalogues,
Ed. Sara Pearce, 2006 and 2007

Selected Collections

British Airports Authority, Heathrow, London
Sheffield Hallam University, UK
Anita Zabludowicz Collection, London
Trinity Hall College, Cambridge
Book Works, London
Paul Smith Ltd. London

- short story
Dogana realised that he had become his own country. That is to say that he now lived in a place that was him. His world was the country that was a place where it was him. As he wrote these lines he appreciated that it not make much sense. How can a place be the person whilst also hosting the person? This could only happen if, he thought, person and place had collapsed into a single entity, now no longer either a person or a place just a….

Now he was lost for words.

A woman walks passed with one of those hideous yet compelling little dogs that you want to pet and kick at the same time. It's impossible not to hear the nauseating squeal that the beast would make. Pathetic small bones breaking within that thin skin.

Doga, capital of Dogania, the sole inhabitant being Dogana. Written like this there now emerged some kind of logic of form at the very least - a setting, a mise en scène.

The funny thing about repetition is that it only further illustrates the pointlessness of the first attempt - the vacuous gesture - so it isn't really repetition at all. The only true repetition is the thing said, after which you simply have to wait for the echo. This doesn't only occur inside the ear of some Greek god or other. Dogana is convinced that all that he has ever said echoes somewhere sooner or later.

He only resided in this place to avoid living in neighbouring Cata (capital city of Catania) a place that, in this setting, seems wantonly fabricated for the sole purpose of cuteness but actually exists. It is the dirtiest place on earth. Described as such it might seem intriguing. Dirty? really, in what way? I mean dirty could be Something. No, honestly, I mean dirty in the sense of never having been cleaned; years of dark grey semi-shiny slime that manages to be simultaneously sticky and slippery, topped with a layer of faeces and rotting organic material. You feel an inner dirtiness from merely seeing it. This phenomena would work just as effectively as a photograph. Again, not trying to be cute - there are a lot of cats in this place, so you have one of the smells right there, right? Black cats sleep among the black volcanic rocks and reddish tabbies are hidden within the bricks.

Dogana is walking up another dirty street in central Cata. Undivided attention is required to avoid stepping in…actually, what is that? what was that? He enters a café. It has the air of a place arrested yet seems devoid of nostalgia or desire. The ceiling is made of a grid of mirrored panels interspersed with molten glass lighting units. The floor is the ceiling. On glass shelves are bottles of Whisky but the labels are for differing brands of cigarettes. We order a cocktail and resign to standing at the bar as there are neither chairs nor tables, just an interior of uncooked meat marble.

The language in Dogania is Do, it is spoken nowhere else in the world and since Dogana is the only inhabitant he is the only one speaking it. His tongue is The tongue. He enjoys playing with the basic forms, making silly jokes and puns - Laika - like a dog in space - that sort of thing - bean soup? yes, but what is it now?

Having been totally destroyed before, on several occasions, Cata has a fearless and gloom laden atmosphere. Why should it care? It isn't really here at all or it won't be soon. Dogana, on the other hand, is all too concerned about his precarity and this state places him at ease and disease. Why care? Care!

Ok, so let's clear this up, all of these things; all the places and names are in fact just one thing. Cata and Doga? Yes, just two sides of the same pizza. Dogana and Dogania - just a hand in a glove, so to speak - take off the glove and it's inside out and there you have Doga. Well, you get it. Anyway here we are; him, us, the town, the country, the landscape the facial features, the odour, the language - all in the same thing at once, all in dialogue with itself. You understand, it is harmony and discord at the same time. Each cancels the other and you or someone out there is left with nothing. Given this, it is, as you might suspect, rather difficult to visit Dogania or find a hotel in Doga. You would be hard pushed to get an interview with Dogana, if say you were a journalist trying to put a radio show together.

Dogana leaves the café and now walks down the hill. After an hour on the bus, with the unnecessary half hour break, he is soon staggering and slipping up the crumbling black scree of volcanic debris. The inside of my insides, he thinks. Dark, already dead or dying. Something like hardness, something liquid.

Dogana has a tune in his head. It is answer and question. He has consoled himself that literally being nothing was something, it must be. Surely a sort of phenomenon? Somethingness by the very state of its nothingness; a complete negation not something simply erased. Thus if he was this type of fantom or ghost then he should be able to walk through walls. Right? He tried to do this, it worked! Emerging out of the other side feeling just a bit nauseous. Like a dog in space. Like a dog at the end of a book.

There is a freeze frame. On the edge of one of the more recent volcanic cones, he turns his head. The cold air on his face stops blowing, he stops breathing.

Again, in the café, the grid of mirrors reflecting the warm marble. Campari in Italy, not Whisky. In the reflected space no money changes hands, at least not real money. There is an economic exchange of images only. The Campari is not red it is only reddish. The Whisky smells of nothing.

So if he hates or fears or merely finds this place repugnant then why does Dogana keep coming back? Embrace the contradiction? Too easy, he thinks. A facile reason for anything.

It simply does not make sense to desire only what you like or you think you like. Like is like nice. I can't stand this dirt but I don't want Zurich either. Yet somewhere in between would be suburbia, that's the worst! So there is nowhere I want to be.

I want to be in nowhere.

Looking around this particular bar Dogana suspects he may well have already found what he was looking for.

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