Mura Ma gallery introduces How to knit a nebula, the first solo show from artist Kate Jacob. The abstract canvases inject some colour into a dreary January so be sure to visit the gallery if you’re nearby!
The title of the exhibition refers to a nebula – a giant cloud of cosmic gas and dust, sometimes created by the remains of a dying star, sometimes appearing in regions where a new star is born. Jacob finds and visualises the voids, places of loss and memory so the double meaning of a nebula as both a place of birth and death provides a fitting metaphor for what the artist is attempting to communicate.
Jacob’s investigative paintings and drawings explore abstract ideas in abstract forms. Neon colours clash with muddier hues, clusters of marks sit alongside empty spaces, patterns and lines. There is a lightness to these works, with thinned out, transparent glazes of colour against more opaque, bolder marks over the top.
The artist herself says of her work: “In colour, mark, shape and gesture I find the fluidity and freedom to convey those spaces inside and outside us that we know, sense and feel. Trying to get to the bottom of something not always known; being fully aware and totally unsure.”
She often works in mixed media, using acrylic paint with ink, crayon and pastels, on paper and canvas. Her drawings sit somewhere between delicate and ethereal, and purposeful and gestural yet all of her creative output reveals an interest in texture. She experiments with the application of paint to create surface and depth to explore themes of memory and loss through visual traces.
How to knit a nebula is not a prescriptive exhibition to be experienced in one singular way – the works leave lots of room for interpretation and the viewer’s own thoughts. As is often the case with abstraction, it’s ideal to visit the show with no preconceived ideas and let the paintings speak to you.