George Harding – MIRROR viewing weekdays and Saturday morning
12th April to 21st May 2016
Open eve 13th April 7-9pm
The central theme in my work focuses on perception; what we define as real or unreal. From detailed portraits of others to abstracted self-portraits, my work explores what it is to be human, how we relate to others, and how we understand ourselves.
This collection of mirror paintings forms a large series of self-portraits using a mirror to distort the image. When we look into a mirror it reflects our physical appearance; however the paintings delve deeper than that; they attempt to reflect back more than the physical reality that presents itself to an individual, manifesting a universal feeling that we can all relate to.
Mirrors as a symbol have been used in art to mean many different things. They suggest the inner world of self-knowledge, discovery and consciousness. They have been seen as a reflection of god, true knowledge or a way of seeing into one’s own soul.
Rendered in reflections of misted or rippled glass, the self-portraits distort and fragment the figure behind. The mirror is a metaphor for there being more to reality than what appears, aspiring to show our temporal nature and the thoughts we have about our origins, our human limits and our future beyond the reality that presents itself to us. The use of water is also significant as a symbol of purification, rebirth and cleansing. The use of gold with in some of the images has connotations of the sun, illumination, light and transcendence. In my paintings the glass acts to abstract the figure and break down to something that is between the physical and abstract, reality and beyond reality. It probes at what we are and questions who we are, as in Einstein’s quote: “Reality is an illusion, albeit a very persistent one”. I want to speculate at what is beyond this illusion and reveal who we truly are.