In his first solo exhibition at Elika Gallery, Jack Burton presents a series of photographs that revolve around themes of love, lust, sensuality and longing. Individually the photographs capture a glimpse of a fictional romantic scenario, viewed sequentially they act as clues that build up a love story of sorts.
The main body of the exhibition is composed of a series of constructed landscapes imbued with a sense of nostalgia and romanticism.Through a focus on nature and the outdoors these works set the tone of the show and provide the backdrop to the bizarre yet tender narrative that is about to unravel. They are complemented by images that testify to the encounters between the imaginative couple that are the silent protagonists of Kelly.
With work that is acceptant rather than critical of the vocabulary and aesthetics of the predominant visual culture, shaped by the age of the internet, adverstising and the media, Burton enhances the sense of familiarity evoked by the subject-matter of his work; A familiarity that is undermined by the obvious, rather crude editing of the photographs and the unatural hues, which render them strange and invite a close inspection in order for them to be deciphered. Through disrupting these images, both formally, by obscuring the normal structure of the photographic image, and conceptually, Burton slows down the viewing process, allowing for the works to be contemplated and visually enjoyed, a process that stands in contrast to the speed of consumption associated with the saturation of images of the present.
Substituting the sense of directness associated with photography with the directness that characterizes the handmade, hinted at through the heavily gestural photoshop work carried out onto the pictures, as well as the handcrafted, painted frames, Burton’s works open up questions concerning the relationship between photography and the disciplines of painting as well as sculpture, testifying to his interdisciplinary approach.