• 04 SEPTEMBER - 16 OCTOBER 2010 
GALERIE GABRIEL ROLT is proud to present UNNATURAL ORDER an exhibition of recent paintings, watercolors and three dimensional works by British artist James Aldridge. This will be Aldridge’s second solo exhibition with the gallery.


James Aldridge takes on themes of nature, landscape and mortality in works that are simultaneously beautiful and disturbing, fascinating and repulsive.  Aldridge’s work is inspired by his immediate environment, the forests of Småland in Southern Sweden and the music he listens to - extreme Heavy Metal.


For his second solo exhibition at Galerie Gabriel Rolt, he will present paintings, watercolors and a new series of his modified bird boxes. In the selection and hanging of the works, the show sees Aldridge taking a more installational approach to create an atmosphere that is strange and darkly humorous, immersing the viewer within his landscapes and objects.


Birds feature throughout Aldridge's practice. His fascination with them began as a child, making drawings from his father's collection of bird-watching books, and they have since become carriers for many of the themes addressed in his work. The likes of crows, owls, magpies recur throughout the paintings and cutouts, each bringing its own associations and symbolic qualities as well as a rich aesthetic beauty. The birds exist in landscapes of thorns, branches, coils of smoke and other animals, like stags. The human presence comes as skulls and bones - never as living beings. It is loaded and intense imagery, its excessiveness working as a means of reclaiming the cliché; of reinvesting these potent symbols with their true meaning. Hence, the grotesqueness and horror that appears in these images offers a sense of nature's reality: that it is a cycle of life and death; one that can be cruel. The new paintings see Aldridge taking his compositions into more dense and delirious realms. There is at once an epic scale in the drama, movement and detail as well as claustrophobia within the picture plane. Despite the violent and dark ingredients, the paintings are unquestionably beautiful - there is a visual fascination in their sense of movement, the layering of forms and unpredictability of each composition.