Accordion Fields

23 Feb-4 May 2024
PV 22 Feb 2024, 6-8pm

Lisson Gallery, 27 Bell St
London NW1 5BY


Varda Caivano | Sarah Cunningham | Dexter Dalwood | Pam Evelyn | Andrew Pierre Hart | Elinor Stanley | Tim Stoner | Joseph Yaeger

A group exhibition of cross-generational painters, Accordion Fields presents a selection of works across both of Lisson Gallery’s London spaces. All eight artists, whether born or based in the UK or internationally, initially cultivated their artistic talent in London, studying at one of the city’s prominent arts schools and often in direct dialogue with one another. Across a thirty-year span, the artists have witnessed a multiplicity of socio-political shifts, including London’s evolving relationship with the rest of the UK, Europe and the world, and an evolution in the position of British painting on a global stage. With works in the show spanning densely layered landscapes to compressed portraits and composite re-imaginings of past events, the participating artists together produce a symphony of painterly styles, exploring the indeterminate, liminal and multi-dimensional notions of space.

The title of the exhibition, Accordion Fields, expresses the very nature of expansion and compression: geographically, as many of the artists have either returned to or moved away from London, and compositionally, with the artists’ specific awareness of, and different approaches to, depicting space or a place. Conceived through a variety of approaches, depicted space within the stretcher is folded, tilted, layered, and peeled away so that depth perception is confused and deferred. In the paintings of Varda Caivano, Sarah Cunningham, Pam Evelyn and Tim Stoner, imagery is often pressed toward the surface of the picture plane, so that an ambiguity between what is representational or abstract space occurs. Elsewhere, figures and forms seen from ambiguous viewpoints are left untethered in disorientating expanses, with undefined borders, such as in the work of Andrew Pierre Hart and Elinor Stanley. In the figuration of Dexter Dalwood and Joseph Yaeger we witness the re-presenting of historical facts and the examination of found imagery. Positioning visual information ‘out of time’, these painters imbue their works with complex coded narratives and psychological tension.

Accordion Fields features work that draws inspiration from a wide array of cultural and historical disciplines, from painters across art history – David Bomberg, Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell and Willem de Kooning – to diverse genres of music and cinematography. Rather than confining their attention to one identity or geopolitical space, or moulding into a movement or neat composition, these eight artists embrace timeless and universal themes that seek to recognise not just their own existence but that of the human spirit, providing these paintings the opportunity to connect with audiences past, present and future.

Other presentations by artists in Accordion Fields include Andrew Pierre Hart’s exhibition, Bio-Data Flows and Other Rhythms – A Local Story at Whitechapel Gallery (opening February 2024), Varda Caivano at Labor, Mexico City (February 2024), Dexter Dalwood debuting his first solo show with Lisson Gallery in London (September 2024), Elinor Stanley in the group exhibition at Nova Contemporary, Bangkok (May 2024), and Joseph Yaeger at Antenna Space, Shanghai (November 2024).