Mix Media Drawings & Photographs by Thadeous Ikihega at Pod Space Gallery : 401 Hunter Street Newcastle.
Thadeous drawings are right up my alley. I love ink, charcoal and nice paper, so I’m rather bias. Thadeous commented about the importance of the paper and brushes used when making studies in ink. I agree and the quality of these pieces is enhanced by the Archival paper and goat hair brushes used by the artist.
Thadeous worked at David Jones in retail in another life and I guess the numerous, moody studies of the now vacant DJs store are explorations of that past existence, as well as very beautiful gestural studies of the architecture of that old shopping hub, now gone quiet. I love the gestural studies in neon of traffic at the lights. Who would imagine a traffic jam to be so vibrant?
The photographs are taken at night and the artificial street light scenes are hard to describe… lonely & beautiful. The photos remind me of quiet nights in the centre of town, the solitude of the empty city streets of Newcastle after midnight when pretty much everything is closed.
The images are raw and unframed, which gives an opportunity to see the work intimately, without the formal glass and frame barrier usual when art is exhibited.
For me this is what these works are; seeing beauty in the everyday and mundane, traffic jams, street lights and the familiar buildings of the decrepit town centre. I do see what you see, I think Thadeous. Newcastle’s landmarks, that we see every day as we wander or rush past the same buildings, trees and Hunter Street traffic, stopped at the lights. Thank you for reminding me. It is easy to forget to look with wonder, with fresh eyes. It is even more challenging to capture that mood and appreciation in a gestural study or digital photograph.