Laura Lancaster: My Echo, My Shadow

16 March – 30 June 2024
FREE / No booking required
NGCA Main Gallery

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My Echo, My Shadow is the largest solo show to date of British painter Laura Lancaster. Presenting new paintings made over the last few years My Echo, My Shadow delves into the current practice of one of the North East’s most celebrated and accomplished painters.

The source of Lancaster’s paintings are found photographs, slides and cine films of strangers, purchased from online auction sites, flea markets and junk shops. She translates the lost and discarded memories into paintings which sit ambiguously between abstraction and figuration. The highly gestural, visceral and expressive application of paint allows the everyday and mundane to become surreal, grotesque and poignantly melancholic. Challenging the formal language of painting and photography Lancaster probes the reliability of the photograph as a record or snapshot replacing representation with nostalgia, familiar with dreamlike and lived experience with collective consciousness.

Confronting a gendered history of painting, Lancaster draws upon numerous styles and genres as well as touching on the history of painting as a medium. The artist paints women in classical poses, be it by water, in lush green landscapes or in moments of rest. However, these motifs, reimagined by Lancaster, avoid a simple passive reading, instead they allude to confinement, vulnerability and control. Guided in the direction of abstraction the paintings refrain from the voyeurism and beauty standards historically associated with female figures within the conventions of traditional painting.

Laura Lancaster was born in Hartlepool, UK in 1979. She lives and works in Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK. She has shown her work in solo exhibitions worldwide including: Laura Lancaster: Closer and Further Away, Workplace London; Laura Lancaster, Wooson Gallery, Korea; Running Towards Nothing, Night Gallery, Los Angeles; Shadows and Mirrors, Workplace, London; Laura Lancaster, The New Art Gallery Walsall; Shapeshifter, Workplace London, UK; and A Stranger’s Dream, Sargent’s Daughters, New York. 

Lancaster’s work is represented by Workplace and is included in numerous international collections including The British Council Collection; The New Art Gallery, Walsall, UK; Nerman Museum, Kansas, USA; The Government Art Collection, UK and numerous private collections worldwide. Her work has recently been published in Vitamin P3: New Perspectives in Painting by Phaidon Press, and Picturing People by Charlotte Mullins for Thames and Hudson. 

Watch below Laura Lancaster speaking about her painting process and the new paintings on display in My Echo, My Shadow: 

Video: Matt Denham 

Image: Laura Lancaster, Shaking Through, 2023, oil on linen, 60 x 50cm. Courtesy the artist and Workplace, UK. Photo by Tom Carter.

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