National Eisteddfod of Wales AmGen/online 2020
‘EPONA’ : Y Lle Celf/ visual art exhibtion Eisteddfod AmGen 2020
Andre Stitt : 5 paintings exhibited
 ‘ Reading The Terrain For The Scent Of Passing’ acrylic on canvas, 180x250cm 2020
 ‘Clearance’ acrylic on canvas, 150x250cm, 2020
 ‘Into The Silence (GPS Decoder #1)’ 2020 acrylic on canvas, 40x60cm
 ‘Into The Silence GPS Decoder #2)’ 2020 acrylic on canvas, 50x60cm
 ‘Lost Cause’ acrylic on canvas, 100x150cm, 2020
In these recent works geometric forms sit within the painted ground which acts as an interconnected and fluid landscape or environment. These forms are abstract and ambiguous, even enigmatic. We are not sure if they are benign, what their relationship with other forms is: are they architectural, do they relate to zones of conflict or are they in some strange way transcendent or adrift from present circumstance.
Some of the geometric forms are based on GPS satellite imagery of security-sensitive and censored sites such as the village of Epynt in Wales which was commandeered by the MOD in 1940. There are also allusions to something solid but also to structure collapsing, breaking down: forms in conflict, layers of paint as interference, with surface erasures and marks suggesting things in transition.
In the studio the experience of making this work during ‘lockdown’ has been one of merging the past and present often haunted by other moments, and other times drawn from my own experience of colonial conditioning growing up in Northern Ireland during ‘The Troubles’. I use these experiences to suggest perhaps a rhizome of interconnectedness that can lead to possible futures.
As the work developed during ‘lockdown’ these forms increasingly equated more to a series of altered states, layers of interference, traces, absences and presence that go beyond the current situation of ’lockdown’ to question the validity and possible cessation of human life. Patricia MacCormack’s new book ‘The Ahuman Manifesto’ published just before ‘lockdown’ concerning activism at the of the Anthropocene (our current era) argues for a new way of thinking that doesn’t dissolve into nihilism and despair but actively embraces concepts of human extinction, deep ecology, a refusal of identity politics and the apocalypse as an optimistic beginning.
I do not wish to prescribe meaning, but these recent paintings suggest to me that through the process of the performed activity of painting in the studio over many weeks of isolation and solitude during ‘lockdown’ it may be possible to arrive in a new space or territory; a place that has yet to be discovered and to go beyond our fear of the unknown.