Episode 54 / VOICES ON ART – The VAN HORN Gallery Podcast / Right here, right now | SOPHIE BARBER, artist, Hastings, UK
Recorded March 7, 2022, 30 min., language english, Portrait photo by Ben Urban

This is a special episode created in collaboration with Independent New York for the OVR of the upcoming edition of the fair from May 5, 2022 on. South Essex based artist Sophie Barber *1996 will show her new paintings in a solo-presentation at the booth of Alison Jacques, which marks her New York debut. Sophie is a young painter with an unconventional and refreshing new voice. She only does what she wants to do – may it be baking, painting or hatching ducklings. She browses through Instagram, the tabloids, art catalogues and went bird watching with her dad. The world is full of images, but for the ones she decides to paint she has to develop a kind of obsession. She talks her painting, the things her daily life are made of – feeding the dog, having breakfast, chasing the canary, watching her partner doing Judo – and after having found enough destractions, painting calls her again. She talks the weight of her paintings, the pillow-like fatness of their body, their scale from miniature to massive, the oilstick she might apply with her hands, the studio in which those paintings lie on the floor and how things randomly get attached to them. She ultimately talks her acceptance of life and the current moment. Her Charisma and that of her paintings is intriguing. Cheers Sophie, I thoroughly enjoyed our conversation. Quote: „Barber’s subjects are both personal and highly incongruous: celebrities, word games and songbirds meet iconic works from art history. The dimensions of her works make similar leaps – from the comically miniature to the strikingly oversized . Indeed, aside from their unifying texture, the only constant amongst these works is Barber’s herself, gathering images from the world as she goes. Barber’s source images are often appropriated from social platforms and screens…In this, Barber’s thick applications of paint make heavy and felt an experience of the world that is, by design, fleeting. It lends visibility and physicality to the way in which images glide over us online, leaving the hazy, at times distorted, memory of their form. ‘It’s not about the image being right’, Barber says of her coalescing portrait of Justin Bieber, ‘it’s about how you remember it’.“

#voicesonart #independentnewyork #sophiebarber #alisonjacques #vanhorngallery #danielasteinfeld #podcast

Alison Jacques


Mousse Magazine

Independent New York