The Sunday Painter will hold a solo exhibition of British artist Nicholas Pope (b. 1949). Opening on 15 September 2018, Nicholas Pope: Sins and Virtues will include the first London showing of the artist’s large-scale installation, The Conundrum of the Chalices of the Seven Deadly Sins and Seven Virtues, as well as a number of drawings and works on paper.
The Conundrum of the Chalices of the Seven Deadly Sins and Seven Virtues will fill the gallery’s double-height main space. It combines 14 glass chalices – the artist’s first sustained use of glass in his work – with the same number of abstract drawings in oil bar pastel. Each glass sculpture finds its analogue in one of the drawings, which are in turn inspired by the seven deadly sins and seven virtues of early Christian teachings. Thus pride, lust, envy, avarice, gluttony, sloth and wrath, as well as prudence, justice, temperance, courage, faith, hope and charity are all represented.
The use of glass is pertinent as the slippages between, and closeness of, the apparently oppositional characteristics are brought into sharp relief by the transparency of the material. Working with master glassmaker James Maskrey at the National Glass Centre, Pope was able to translate mark making into glass blowing, revealing a complex relationship between artist and maker. With the drawings displayed alongside the chalices, audiences will be offered the opportunity to see this translation in proximity and to reassess definitions of craft and fine art. The installation’s unusual alignment within the gallery space will also contribute to notions of redefinition and reorientation, with the sculptures to be displayed on a large glass shelf, suspended well above head-height in the middle of the main space, its dimensions almost matching those of the gallery floor.
The Sunday Painter , 117-119 South Lambeth Road, London, SW8 1XA
15 September – 10 November 2018