Purgatorium


PURGATORIUM

David Van Gough solo exhibition

September 5th – October 4th

Artist Reception, Saturday, September 6th | 6-9PM

Purgatorium “wherein the human spirit purges itself, and growth worthy to ascend” — Purgatorio-Dante

In his forty-fifth Year, David Van Gough embarked upon a series which would finally confront the daunting shadow cast by his most famous ancestor, and the inevitable connotations of that surname.

Adopting the characterization of Vincent Van Gogh as martyr– and recapitulating stanzas from Shakespeare’s Tempest recast as themes of life’s metaphorical exile – Purgatorium (Latin for “the place in between”) sets a chronological backdrop of re-imagined personal biography from the desolate mire of his Liverpudlian upbringing to imagined death and the shadowed here-after.

Night Kept Chained Below by David Van Gough

Night Kept Chained Below by David Van Gough

“Each piece, from the composition to color choice and content matter, was both meticulously labored over and organically released. If the show is about anything, it’s about duality and in-betweens. The world of purgatory is an in-between state. All of the memories, both those personally experienced by the artist and the collective memories of Shakespeare and Van Gogh and other cultural references that have filtered in to shape his own existence, breathe in the in-between. Memories are not our past or our present. They linger between truth and fiction and between hope and fear.

David Van Gough unearths memories from every stage of his life symbolically in this series. He chronicles his struggle to escape the oppressive stereotype of the starving or garrote artist that has been thrust upon him as the Van Gogh legacy. The romantic ideal that the artist should suffer and sacrifice for his art does not champion art. Instead it creates a vicious self-destructive cycle whereby artists become afraid of success. Success becomes a liability to authenticity. The rest of the world can take advantage of what artists can do without adequately supporting them. The true, master artist is meant to be a mad, conflicted, alcoholic caricature rather than a human being. — UponAMidnightDreary.com

 

The Dark and Backwards Abysm of Time by David Van Gough

The Dark and Backwards Abysm of Time by David Van Gough

His work has been exhibited in Europe, as well as being a regular addition to shows on both the West and East coasts of the US. In 2010 he exhibited in fifteen shows, of which he was featured in five of them. The same year, David was awarded honoree artist at the San Diego Art Institute

Raised in Liverpool England, in a terraced house overlooking a cemetery, his early years were colored by a tableau of EC Horror comics,70’s occultism,synth rock and Catholic guilt.
Always a keen scribbler,his artistic intents were fully realized upon seeing a monograph of Bosch’s Earthly Delights.

Enrolling to study at the Liverpool school of Art-upon graduating-he left for a decade as a commercial artist. However,upon the death of a friend-the third to die in a fifteen year period-what he calls a ‘cruel reminder of life’s fleetingness’,revitalized his early ambitions.

After a move to the California in 2005, and motivated by what he felt was a growing fundamental, religious extremism in the US, he began a new series entitled ‘Theothanatos’ (Latin for ‘death of God’), which would deal with broad questions of dogma and human origin.

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