36.1 Projects is pleased to present Interiors, a solo exhibition of 14 new paintings by Poppy Jones (*1985, London).
In ‘Time Passes’, the middle section of Virginia Woolf’s novel To The Lighthouse, the prose tracks through the Ramsay family’s vacated summer home. The island airs survey the house, moving across its objects and worn surfaces; years go by.
Nothing stirred in the drawing-room or in the dining-room or on the staircase. Only through the rusty hinges and swollen sea-moistened woodwork certain airs, detached from the body of the wind (the house was ramshackle after all) crept round corners and ventured indoors. Almost one might imagine them, as they entered the drawing-room questioning and wondering, toying with the flap of hanging wall-paper, asking, would it hang much longer, when would it fall? Then smoothly brushing the walls, they passed on musingly as if asking the red and yellow roses on the wall-paper whether they would fade, and questioning (gently, for there was time at their disposal) the torn letters in the wastepaper basket, the flowers, the books, all of which were now open to them and asking, Were they allies? Were they enemies? How long would they endure?
Woolf’s writing forms both a portrait of the Ramsay family in absentia and an elegant meditation on mutability. Poppy Jones’ (*1985, London) new suite of works on display in Interiors, the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery, performs a similar tracking over clothing, books, flowers, vases, glasses and candles. While there isn’t an overt narrative to be discerned in the 14 works there is a sense of movement, a disembodied quality of observation that gives the selection a distinctly novelistic feel. The objects in the paintings are closely cropped, caught in sunlight, or shadowed attractively, and often rendered by Jones in a single hue––each seeming to catch a quiet moment of interiority, away from the trials and tasks of the everyday. In this sense, the show’s title has a dual meaning, speaking to the way our emotional lives and domestic arrangements intertwine.
Throughout Interiors there is a play between inside and outside and an abiding concern with points of transition; a windowsill, an open book, a zipped jacket, a lit candle, flowers drooping in a vase. The set offers a kind of incomplete inventory, a partial view, or a portrait of someone just out of shot, and also a lacuna for contemplation for ourselves. Together they represent what Virginia Woolf might recognise as the effort ‘to assemble outwardly the scattered parts of the vision within.’