British artist, illustrator and printmaker, Ed Kluz, whose multi-disciplinary practice explores contemporary perceptions of the past through the re-imagining of historic landscapes, is presenting his third exhibition, Facades, at the John Martin Gallery in London. On display are a series of paintings of London’s historic facades whose designs are inspired by pageantry, celebration and pleasure. In these series of paintings, Kluz has sought to capture the same sense of celebration that these elaborate architectural schemes were originally designed for, but which, unfortunately, were left no more than fragile, temporary exterior surfaces.
The paintings range from the Arches of Triumph constructed for the coronation of James I in 1604 to the Ranelagh Rotunda, and unexecuted plans for a new Whitehall Palace by distinguished English architect, Inigo Jones (1573-1652). Each work left an indelible impression in London’s cultural history despite being either short-lived or existing only as engravings and drawings.
The exhibition Facades has been divided into three parts. First is a set of ink drawings of the Gates of London, followed by an ambitious series recreating some of the Triumphal Arches designed by Stephen Harrison to celebrate the coronation of James I in London in 1604. Lastly, a group of large-scale oil and collage panels render some of London’ most famous buildings, from the Whitehall Palace, the Royal Exchange to the Ranelagh Rotunda.
A peek into a few paintings on view from the exhibition-
With Facades, Ed Kluz realises that same memory of festivity and decorative pleasure, though ephemeral and impermanent in their architecture, associated with the history of these features.
The exhibition is on view at John Martin Gallery in London till October 5, 2019.