Companions and Furrows

by Rebecca Geldard

Full disclosure, I’ve known Gill Ord for many years and have seen enough of her studio back catalogue to know she is able to produce equally compelling views of things we encounter as things we think about. Often, they speak quietly in a familiar but not always visually audible patois, for its not as though you can actually separate figurative and abstract concerns in such a way. But her paintings, like those produced by the best of her contemporaries, draw the viewer into territories that connect the two.

With Ord, however, there is a fluidity to the way she travels – quite literally as an adventurer, but also across subjects and the canvas surface – that makes her appear unusually fluent in both. Of course, it’s not just an ambidextrous handwriting thing, the evidence of feel here for light and how it alters the physical world (and the moods of witnesses) has been developed over years of observing urban life and the landscape.

I always enjoy returning to Studio 1.1, getting slightly lost en route in a new way and re-discovering the gallery in changing situ – defiantly present and absolutely itself in a world of wannabes. Ord’s last solo show here, ‘Sotteraneo’, presented a body of work following her time as an Abbey painting fellow at the British School at Rome. The creamy 18th century light of a dreamily conceived group of paintings, existing at different points along a sliding scale of recognisability, has been replaced with something sharper and more tart on the collective taste buds in ‘Companions & Furrows’.


ALL IMAGES © GILL ORD 2019. All rights reserved.