Petalia Humpheys

July 19th – August 5th, 2023


To tend means to care for something, or, to go or move in a particular direction.

Tend is an installation of two-dimensional and three-dimensional paintings. As active objects the cube paintings present an illusory game of shifting dimensionality, posing sequences of iterative patterns to be solved by the ambulatory viewer. Born of architectural interiors, reformed through reduction and repetition, Humphreys’ playful installations invite the viewer to move in and around the work and the exhibition space it inhabits.

Tend’s candy-coloured works all derive from one two-dimensional painting, developed into multiple series of iterative patterned cube paintings, exploring the possibilities of further wrapping, unwrapping, of flattening and revealing of form. Alongside these sit a family of smaller cubes that translate the imagined internal dimensionality existing inside the larger work. Through complex visualisation and deconstruction of internal form, the cube is dismantled into three-dimensional forms of colour then divided into cross-sectioned smaller components.

The obsessive care in which the objects are hand crafted disclose a crisp, slightly protruding hard edge. What unveils itself more potently upon inspection is the materiality revealed in the construction – the wood grain of the pine and plywood forms and the brushstroke of acrylic house paint is celebrated rather than concealed. Mis-tinted paint sourced locally hints at the architectural vernacular that appeals to Humphreys’ musings.