Thursday, November 24, 2016



John Cronin, ZXX 8, 2015, 1.2 x 1.8 m, oil on aluminium. Courtesy: the artist and RHA Galleries, Dublin

John Cronin
16 November – 21 December

If Yuri Pattison looks at how technology both abets and overwhelms, John Cronin draws ideas of artificial intelligence and augmented reality into his lush abstract oil on aluminium paintings. Endeavouring to explore, and depict, how evolving technologies shape and alter perception, the results are a feast. At first, the 14 works simply shimmer and attract. There are rainbows worth of rich and vibrant colours and, with the largest pieces more than five metres long, there’s a lot to grab the attention. Spend time with them, and patterns emerge. The ZXX of the works’ titles (all except for two earlier pieces Augmented Reality (2011) and Standard Deviations (2013)) refers to the US Library of Congress category for books which contain ‘no linguistic content,’ as well as to a covert typeface, designed by Sang Mun, to avoid optical character recognition. ZXX (8) (2015) hints at patterns or reflections of trees on water, or perhaps recurring lines of blue-green data, overlaid with bright orange spots – either interference or perfectly spherical algae. Again, in ZXX (15) (2016) the forms are either teeming amoeba or patterns of code. Cumulatively, Cronin has created his own abstract language that visualises the usually unseen deep data that structures our lives.

John Cronin, ZXX 8, 2016, 1.8 x 3.6m, oil on aluminium. Courtesy: the artist and RHA Galleries, Dublin

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