James Cousins is known for his complex paintings which are formed from combined stencils, found imagery and processes extending from a paint, canvas, materiality nexus. Accent presents the second instalment of two shows - the first exhibition was held in Brisbane earlier this year - and further extends upon ideas first explored in his exhibition Signal at Gow Langsford Gallery in 2009.
An enquiry into warranting what counts as painting is central to Cousins' practice. Via a compounded layering of process and procedure: deliberate declarations of paint, support and surface, elaborate systematised patterns and unmediated spontaneous acts, Cousins' works simultaneously expose and mask the trail of decisions central to their creation. Assembled contradictions and reversals converge in an affecting space that segues from the recognisable to the intangible. The culmination of layer and process creates systems blurring abstraction and figuration. Intertwined and coexistent tensions arise between the original form and the surface, creating and defining a context of suspended meaning. Space in the works operates as a condensed expression of thought conveyed as a tangible element.
Steadfast in their own reality yet palpable in their uncertainty, Cousins' new works reflect an agency of possibility. They are works which embrace embedded limitations and anachronisms and engender a
response of numb recoil to these divergent and uncertain times.