An intimate setting for Gordon Cheung’s ambitious range of work, Edel Assanti offered enough space for several paintings as well as three dimensional work, the installation of which perhaps assisted by the fact Cheung’s studio is only upstairs. The imagery demonstrates sophistication in computer-developed imagery, but my attraction to the work lies in the physical manipulation of material. As much as conceptual and practical aspects of art practice cannot be separated from each other, nevertheless I wanted to focus my review on how the material surfaces of the paintings appear on a painterly level. As a painter myself, I am particularly intrigued by the ways Cheung pushes the boundaries of what paint can do, in terms of various degrees of relief, and how it connects to liquid/active elements in the imagery.
‘In ‘Supercell’, swirling lines describe the watery ground, picked out through sparing painterly intervention. Attention is drawn to the force of the bull’s movement, which appears to cause rainbowed worms of paint to fly into the depth of field of the painting’s surface. Cheung associates the movement of his subjects with the action of his technique, thereby linking the challenge of his materials with the imagined struggles of the paintings’ protagonists, within a setting of materially evocative surrounds.’