Duncan MacAskill

DFM Recordings

Vigo Gallery21 Dering Street, London W1S 1AL
27 April – 25 May 2018

For Duncan MacAskill’s third show at Vigo he revisits his DNA paintings of the 90s with three brand new works presented alongside three classic nineties paintings.  In addition, the exhibition features several highlights from his ten-year show at Toynbee Studios.   He was artist in residence between 2004 and 2007 while the building underwent major renovation and during this time he worked with processes of collection, retrieval, measurement and material excavation relating to the changing environment.

 

Conceived in the early nineties when RNA and DNA were topical issues, MacAskill's DNA paintings consist of abstract marks, which echo the horizontal, slot-like patterning of discarded DNA gels. Fascinated conceptually, by how we are all an amalgamation of virtually identical constituent parts, yet at once all radically different, he sees these discarded unreferenced gels as visual abstractions of an individual’s genetic makeup, - comprehendible by an expert yet just shapes to the layman. They act as potent visual source for an artist preoccupied with what is left behind; incidental traces of life, movement and time. Using thinly cut pieces of card to apply the slivers of paint to his canvases, each work in the series shares a common thread of repetitive technique/ process associated with scientific investigation but cannot escape the crafted element of MacAskill's mark making. Like the DNA gels each one fundamentally looks similar but is essentially unique.

 

These are abstract portraits of unknown sitters, a tribute to both our strong commonality and total uniqueness.

 

Duncan MacAskill is a London-based visual artist whose work has been presented in a range of contexts, including a large-scale commission for Sadlers Wells and installations at Wapping Power Station, drawing collaborators from backgrounds spanning dance, theatre and sound. He is represented exclusively by Vigo Gallery.

 

 

selected works

ATAGCC
1994/1995
What If
1995
What If DN
1993
Measuring Sticks
2005/2006

TAGTAG

2016Acrylic on canvas243 x 182 cm / 95 5/8 x 71 5/8 in

CATCAT

2016Acrylic on canvas 243 x 182 cm / 95 5/8 x 71 5/8 in

ATAGCC

1994/1995Acrylic on canvas243.84 x 182.88 cm / 96 x 72 in

GATGAT

2016Acrylic on canvas 243.84 x 182 cm / 96 x 71 5/8 in

CTAG

1993Acrylic on Canvas 177.8 x 177,8 cm / 70 x 69 5/8 in

What If

1995Acrylic on canvas 183 x 142 cm / 72 x 55 7/8 in

What If DN

1993Acrylic on canvas 154 x 122 x 2 cm / 60 5/8 x 48 x  3/4 in

Measuring Sticks

2005/2006Wood

Untitled

Wood40 x 40 x 16 cm / 15 3/4 x 15 3/4 x 6 1/4 in