Routine demonstrations of research and generic reference points provide material for Alan Michael’s (b.1967) paintings and photo-based works. Often using the formats of Photorealism and Pop Art, Michael casually represents a type of practice where distortion is the equivalent of development, presentation is content and the ritual of work itself is materialised.
Sources from art, design and fashion appear alongside plants, cars, food, text, logos and other commonplace objects. Michael approaches these subjects with the same indifferent objectivity - isolating, splitting and repeating his subjects within the frame of the canvas so that they appear coolly detached and anonymous. Devoid of any context, source or reference to their mode of circulation, Michael highlights the layered signifiers embedded in these images. Images are rendered with a lustrous mirror-like sheen, lending them a flatness or screen like quality which evokes the loss of any material reality or physical context. Thus, Michael's work reflects wider shifts within post-internet culture and the unseen hierarchies at work in the circulation and dispersion of today's vast economy of images.
For Syn, Alan Michael presents a new series of works which, in the words of the artist, are “based on dreams and refer to nothing outside of themselves – there isn’t a code”.