Silvia Lerin

Catalog FLORENCE TRUST 2017


I hope that my painting has the impact of giving someone, as it did me, the feeling of his own totality, of his own separateness, of his own individuality. -Barnett Newman

Silvia Lerin’s practice stems from her present condition, exploring the limitations of material impersonation. Her refined minimalism pins down the difference between what it is to experience a thing versus being that thing. Her series An English Garden (2016) reduced the fundamental character of an iris or poppy to forms and colours that maintained the familiarity of a flower. Their bold colours and confident geometry secure our reading of them without falling into concrete realism. Playing with Baudrillard’s third simulacra her works manifest the liminal space of becoming. Reversing Magritte’s premise This is not a pipe, Lerin aspires to the edge of our imagination, where the unreal becomes reality.

A Metal Flower is a Dead Flower (2017), marked the end of her engagement with the organic world and the beginning of an exchange with structural materials. Endeavouring to manifest on canvas the impermeable and unimpressionable elements employed in our built environment.

Having abandoned the mimesis of reality early on in her career, she has worked across and beyond the canvas, in many cases producing architectural interventions. Lerin is among contemporary painters continuing to question the limitations of painting. Her exchange with materials is one of direct and immediate action and reaction. Yet a sense of control pervades, distinguishing her works as formal objects rather than emotional impressions. Recalling early conceptual painters, Lerin questions our understanding or identification of our surroundings, and art’s position within that dialogue.

Ashlee Conery. 2017