Stuart McLachlan

In Hope We Trust

10 October — 26 October 2019

Lives and works in Sydney

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Represented by nanda\hobbs

Stuart McLachlan's exhibition In Hope We Trust is a beautiful, yet, cautionary tale of living in a world on the edge. The artist’s medium—exquisitely hand-carved and rendered paper, has created allegorical moments—observationally surrealist in manner—yet, somehow powerfully poignant in their simplicity of messaging and intent.  One does not have to delve too deeply below the surface of the laminated forms to find McLachlan’s coded messaging, echoing the fragility of our human existence.

They are sculptural forms—including lighthouses teetering on the edge of cliffs. Their segmented structure—as they struggle against the enormity of nature, is prophetic. There is a hint of the Romantic sublime in his work. Great beauty comes from his attention to the detail in all elements that make the whole of a composition. The windows of a church, the antlers of a reindeer, the deco relief of an upside-down Chrysler building—all created with surgical precision.  In many works, there is a defying of logic of the laws of gravity, serving to underline the thrust of his artistic mission. McLachlan points to us living in a world that has turned on its head—delicately balanced as humanity makes up its mind whether apathy or action is the way forward.

Viewing this exhibition, I continuously come back to Italian Baroque artist, Salvatore Rosa. Rosa, often playful in his portrayal of classicism and landscape, painted one of the great works of grief and hope in 1654 as the plague ravaged Naples.  In L'Umana Fragilità (Human Frailty), the Angel of Death looms out of the gloom—bones golden and wings poised, holding the hand of Rosa’s young son as he writes a tale of life on a parchment. The painting, rich in symbolism, talks of the fragility of existence—pure vanitas in intent, however, somehow comforting in the potential for an existence beyond the earthly world. It is beautiful in every aspect—the work painted in the grief of the death of a son, provides hope and direction to the living.

This is an exhibition created in a contemporary artistic paradigm with a neo-classical intent. McLachlan delivers his message of hope and beauty to a world that undoubtedly needs guidance. It is up to humanity to take note—the message is not new, but the metaphorical edge of the cliff is closer now than ever before.   

Ralph Hobbs
October, 2019

\ Exhibition featured works

Stuart McLachlan

Blind Faith

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue and stone \ 42 x 19 x 19cm

SOLD

Stuart McLachlan

Cardinal Sins

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, glue and stone \ 66 x 61 x 32cm

Stuart McLachlan

Pilot light

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue \ 80 x 52.5 x 34cm

Stuart McLachlan

Reclamation

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, glue and stone \ 52 x 65 x 30cm

Stuart McLachlan

Recoil

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue and stone \ 42 x 19 x 19cm

HOLD

Stuart McLachlan

Scaffold

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper and glue \ 51 x 24 x 24cm

Stuart McLachlan

Seachange

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue and stone \ 42 x 19 x 19cm

Stuart McLachlan

State of Mind

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, embossing aluminium, acetate and glue \ 99 x 32 x 32cm

SOLD

Stuart McLachlan

The Keeper

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue and stone \ 42 x 19 x 19cm

Stuart McLachlan

The Present

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, acrylic paint, acetate, glue and stone \ Diptych - each 39 x 11 x 15cm

Stuart McLachlan

Twilight's last gleaning

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, glue and stone \ 42 x 19 x 19cm

SOLD

Stuart McLachlan

Vain Citadels

2019 \ Arches watercolour paper, paper, glue and stone \ 52 x 65 x 30cm

Stuart McLachlan

\ Instal photo

Stuart McLachlan

\ Instal photo

Stuart McLachlan

\ Instal photo

Stuart McLachlan

\ Instal photo

Stuart McLachlan

\ Instal photo

\ Other exhibitions

This Used to be the Future + In Hope We Trust

Matthew Quick & Stuart McLachlan

10 October — 26 October 2019

Matthew Quick

This Used to be the Future

10 October — 26 October 2019

Adam Nudelman

Away From The Light Of The World

19 September — 5 October 2019

Contact Us

to find out more about In Hope We Trust.

12 - 14 Meagher Street Chippendale, NSW 2008
Opening Hours
9am - 5pm Monday to Friday 11am - 4pm Saturday The gallery will be OPEN on Sunday 15 September during Sydney Contemporary 11am - 4pm