Daniel Barkley // Temporary Location 1460 Sherbrooke St W
Nov 7 – Nov 29, 2020
Galerie D’Este is pleased to present the works of renowned figurative painter Daniel Barkley, in a new temporary project space located at 1460 Sherbrooke Street West, neighboring the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Daniel Barkley’s latest works draw from three themes:
“The classical subject of the Bacchanal intrigues me because the event is characterized by the participants’ indulgence in consumerism. Handsome Bacchus and his retinue of sexy revelers arrive from unknown parts to share in the celebration of harvest. They sing, dance, eat and drink to excess with no thought for tomorrow. Garbage is left behind polluting water and air. The demi-god cares little for the ravages of his passage as long as he gets to fill his belly.”
“We often see images of refugees in the media, especially the ones who travel by water on makeshift boats, wrapped in gold emergency blankets. If you are wearing this blanket, it is probably the worst day of your life; you have lost everything, including loved ones.
Throughout the centuries artists have used gold to allude to its connection with wealth and beauty and it’s long association with the divine. The contrast between the refugees’ dire predicament and the beguiling beauty of the gold reflective plastic fabric attracted me to this subject. I painted my model to look somewhat defiant, like a regal Medici luxuriating in his finest satins. He hides his vulnerability well.”
“In medieval paintings of exorcisms a small red or black figure representing an evil spirit or demon emerges from the mouth of the person who was possessed. After some theatrical hocus-pocus on the part of the priest, the demon is expelled and the possessed can return to a life of docile devotion. In my paintings the gold demon represents our best fully realized selves and this creature’s calm demeanor contrasts with the agitation of the host. The host struggles to overcome the life experiences that hinder a quest to be honest, creative, successful and a loving individual. I believe the person we want to be literally exists within; we must endeavor to realize ourselves and live openly.”