George Byrne | Block Colour

George Byrne | Block Colour

October 13 - November 4, 2018
3045 Granville St, Vancouver
Artist's Reception: October 18th, 6-8 pm, Artist in Attendance

Bau-Xi Gallery is pleased to introduce Sydney-born, Los Angeles-based photographer George Byrne to our artist roster. Byrne’s inaugural exhibition at Bau-Xi Vancouver, Block Colour explores the graphic simplicity of architectural form and light across different neighbourhoods in Los Angeles.

Byrne started photographing Los Angeles with a medium format camera in 2010. Mostly devoid of human presence, the photographs in Block Colour capture the serendipity of the everyday urban experience stripped down to its bare elements. Byrne’s close-crop photos, often taken from the middle of the street, show careful attention to the geometric fragments of his urban surroundings revealed in subtle line and unexpected shadow which cut across pastel walled surfaces, and divide soft sky from gritty stucco, plastic and concrete.

From afar, Byrne’s vibrant compositions resemble abstract paintings. His reduction of architectural form to their purest elemental shape and block of colour harken to Henri Matisse’s cut-outs. His flattened cityscapes recall the modernist paintings of Richard Diebenkorn with their clean lines and flat, formal components. Soft-hued and complementary colour combinations evoke playfulness and lighthearted humour, punctuated by not-so hard-edge lines, slabs of concrete and peeking palm trees. Byrne’s work encapsulates not only the spirit of his adopted city’s unique and diverse cityscape, but an aesthetic sensibility that has come to be ubiquitous with our globalized visual culture influenced by equal parts art history and Instagram.


George Byrne was born in Sydney, Australia in 1976 and graduated from Sydney College of the Arts in 2001. He has exhibited internationally in Italy, India, Australia, and New York. In 2010, Byrne relocated to Los Angeles, California where he continues to live and work today. 


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