Measure of Me
This painting depicts a figure, dressed in a brightly patterned coat and tights, listening to someone speaking on the phone as they smoke a cigarette. The cord of the receiver matches a cord the figure absent-mindedly ties around their thigh, as if measuring it. The subject's cadmium-red hands move viewers' eyes away from their face, instead focusing attention on their body language. This work's texture and intense patterning tempts viewers to reach out and stroke the work—seducing with bright colors and empathic surfaces. However, once viewers have relaxed into the painting, they realize things are not as they initially appear.
Nell Brookfield builds up her work through thin layers of natural pigments, using both acrylic medium and oil paint on linen. The artist's compositions are crops of what could be larger works, asking viewers to imagine what lurks just beyond the canvas.
Nell Brookfield’s humorous paintings exaggerate the situations they portray while exploring the strangeness of human behavior and rituals. The artist builds up thin layers of natural pigments mixed with acrylic medium and oil paint onto linen canvases, creating works that concentrate on texture and feature bright colors and intensely patterned surfaces. Brookfield’s compositions focus on body language and touch, and appear to be cropped from larger works—inviting viewers to imagine what lurks just beyond the canvas.