Charles Avery


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Year 2020
Medium Pencil, acrylic, and watercolour on paper
Dimensions 29.7 x 21 cm

About the artist:

Born 1973 Oban, Charles Avery lives and works in London and on the Island of Mull.

Avery has dedicated himself to a singular world-building project through the depiction of an imaginary island. Titled The Islanders, this project describes the formation of Avery’s extensive fiction through drawings, writing, objects, architecture, and design. The Island at the centre of Avery’s constructed world is located among an archipelago of innumerable constituents. The gateway to the Island is the town of Onomatopoeia, a highly-textured metropolis that bears the hallmarks of an evolving urban landscape. Once the stepping off point for pioneers who first came, the town experienced rapid tranfsormation from a colonial outpost, to boom town, bustling metropolis, depression-ravaged slum, and finally a regenerated city of culture and tourist destination. The culture and fabric of the Island continue to evolve, further illuminated with each successive work.

His work is held in public and private collections including Tate, London; Arts Council England Collection, London; Gemeentemuseum, The Hague; and The National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh.

Selected solo exhibitions include The Taile of The One-Armed Snake, GRIMM, Amsterdam (2020); The Gates of Onomatopoeia, Ingleby Gallery, Edinburgh (2019); Study #15: Charles Avery, David Roberts Art Foundation, London (2017); The Improbable City, Edinburgh Art Festival (2015); What’s the matter with Idealism?, Gemeentemuseum, The Hague (2015); What’s So Great About Happiness? The People and things from Onomatopoeia – Part 2, Studio SALES di Norberto Ruggeri, Rome (2014); It Means It Means!, Galerie Perrotin, Paris (2013); and Vitrines: Charles Avery, L’Antenne, Le Plateau, FRAC, Paris (2013). Selected group exhibitions include Other.Worldly, Fries Museum, Leeuwarden (2020); The Seventh Continent, curated by Nicolas Bourriaud, 16th Istanbul Biennale (2019); Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London (2019); Auto fictions – Contemporary drawing Prix de dessin Guerlain, Wilhelm Hack Museum, Ludwigshafen am Rhein (2018); TWENTY, Ingleby Gallery, Edinburgh (2018); Plurivers, curated by Nicolas Bourriaud, La Panacée, Montpellier (2017); and GLASSTRESS, Palazzo Franchetti, 57th Biennale di Venezia, Venice (2017).

Avery was shortlisted for the Daniel and Florence Guerlain Contemporary Art Foundation’s Drawing Prize, Les Mesnuls (2017); represented Scotland at the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007); was shortlisted for the Jerwood Drawing Prize, London (2002 and 2004); and won the Prospects Drawing Prize, London (2003).

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