January 21 – April 2, 2021
Lonsdale Gallery is proud to present The Solace of Open Spaces, featuring Jim Reid’s latest expressive landscapes on paper in the Upper Gallery.
Jim Reid’s watercolour sketches express a yearning for escape. Seeking a sense of comfort in vast all-encompassing landscapes, the artist celebrates its awe-inspiring strength and highlights its vulnerable fragility. The Solace of Open Spaces surveys the unique geography of the North American landscape. From rural Ontario to the deserts of Arizona, Reid’s atmospheric panoramas examine and capture the fleeting landscape, always in a state of constant flux.
Jim Reid The Solace of Open Spaces
Second Floor, Lonsdale Gallery
Swaths of watercolour in airy hues are overlayed with vibrant and energetic pastel strokes. The ephemeral quality of the paint, combined with the artist’s gestural intervention onto the composition, reveals a dynamic ever-changing landscape. The tension of these two materials highlights the interwoven relationships between mankind and nature. Looking to the land – its openness and expansive horizon – Reid expresses a longing for experiencing a sense of freedom and liberation.
For the artist, accessing and connecting to the natural world allows us to gather a deeper understanding of our place in history and society. From weather patterns to the effect of mankind on the natural environment, Reid’s work aims to enlighten the viewer about the importance of preserving these unique sites – the woodlands, wetlands, deserts, and plains. The works are part of the artists’ sustained visual exploration of themes of natural conservation and land development.
“For centuries, Western culture and science have sought to demystify and control nature. Today, no corner of the earth is unaltered by technology, yet nature remains beyond our control, infinitely complex and enigmatic…”
Reid’s images are painted en plein air, a method of painting which dates back to the late 19th century. Working outside, painting the environment in real time, the artist’s compositions capture the vibrancy and energy of the landscape. Reid’s paintings are imbued with the effects of the outdoors. From raindrops to watercolour forming crystallized ice patterns over the surface – the renderings are filled with bold visual harmony.