Inverleith House, Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh
November 12th 2011-January 22nd 2012
Absence makes the heart grow fonder in Andrew Kerr’s first major solo
show in Scotland. Almost seventy new paintings discreetly dominate both
floors, only interrupted by the odd smattering of drawings or
sculptural intervention. Most of the mainly sketchbook-sized works are
urgent Zen abstractions awash with counterpointing colours that swoosh
into vivid life as if racing to catch a moment before it disappears.
Some look like splodged-in blueprints for flags of imaginary
countries. Others are rich with implied veldts and blurred deltas, a
jungle drum soundtrack the only thing missing along with the blank
corners where the works were pinned down while being made. Occasionally
more tangible shapes squint through the heat-haze; an alligator here; a
motor in motion there.
The nails embedded in a small arc of wood give it a sad-eyed cartoonish
feel. The bone-like structure dividing the room turns out to be made of
paper. A wall of exercise-book doodles features pencilled-in dreamers
in black-and-white repose. Kerr’s best dreams, however, come in colours
only the most haunting of sense memories can conjure up.
The List, December 2011