Alex Giles's Eye Hurters need to be seen in the flesh

Can all art be appreciated on a screen? A new exhibition being held next month at Morecambe's White Elephant Gallery may need you to leave the house (and this dear website, sob!)

From 7 November, you can catch Eye Hurters, a series of works by fine artist Alex Giles. The show is the first exhibition by the Manchester-based creative, who dusted off his brushes to start painting again after his work as an art director was curtailed during lockdown.

While these pieces may have come out of the gloom of present times, this is not the subject of the show. Rather, each painting is its own subject, all about paint, surface and visual stimulation. There is a playful simplicity which brings its own sense of liberation; Alex remembers being unimpressed by the theoretical contortions of his art school elders. However, art school did help him realise something he already instinctively knew. Namely, that art can be understood as a kind of alchemy – the transmuting of junk and rubbish into gold.

Alex's pieces tend to eschew a pure reliance on the bright primary hue, often preferring instead, subtly muted tertiary colours, sometimes overlayered in an ambiguous comment on the illusion of depth. Either way, you might need to see these paintings in real life to get the full effect.

Alex will also be creating a painting in situ at the gallery, and there are plans to project some of his work on prominent buildings in Morecambe, such as the Midland Hotel.

Eye Hurters runs from 7 November until 12 December, and the gallery is open Thursday to Saturday, 10am-4pm. Admission is free. To meet Covid-19 restrictions, a one-way system is in place, and visitors are limited to four people at a time. Anyone wishing to view the exhibition at any other time should phone or email the gallery in advance.

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