oil on canvas
signed, titled and dated 1999 on the reverse
24 ins x 36 ins; 61 cms x 91.4 cms
As a painter, Brian Kipping (1953-2007) is best known for his urban landscapes, with evacuated night cities - in particular, downtown Toronto - illuminated by the chiaroscuro glow of street lights. Artist’s Party presents a much more intimate perspective: the inside of a large room, filled with light and people. Despite the clamour of the party, the figures remain obscured and indistinct; much of the focus is given to the space above, echoing the vacancies of his street paintings. The image vibrates with a bleary energy, and the whole room seems to double and animate with activity that is immediately felt rather than seen. The image radiates with a mesmerising glow, the room filling with the buzz of half-remembered conversations and warm after images. Absent of recognisable figures, Kipping brings attention to a moment in time that is general rather than specific, and speaks to his belief of ‘paintings as painting,’ art free of function.
Private Collection, Toronto