At a time when nostalgia has proven to provide comfort and respite, Thinkspace Projects is pleased to present Brad Woodfin’s ‘Glad You’re Here,’ a solo exhibition inspired by songs from decades ago.
Filled with sentimentality and a bittersweet melancholy, the paintings for ‘Glad You’re Here’ take cues from the moods of certain old songs, including the particular language around sadness: being blue. Woodfin reflects this in the colours of the portraits, the symbolism, and iconography. A self-described fan of devotional art, the experience Woodfin creates is nothing short of poetic. Pulling from an audio medium to a visual one, Woodfin manages to preserve the nostalgic feeling of “Golden Moments,” a grief that buzzes through speakers rising like smoke rings to meet every era. The title only feeds into the experience, intentionally chosen as something that may be a bit disarming to say out loud.
His portraits of creatures, rendered carefully on a rich dark background, evoke the portraits from the Dutch Golden Age. The posture of his subjects and his use of light combine to bestow each species with an almost religious reverence. With reverence for his subjects, Brad favours expression and mood over academic documentation.
“‘Glad You’re Here’ is influenced by the moods and colors of certain old songs, how they can be sort of soft and spacious but at the same time be sort of devastating. I named the paintings after real old songs, I made them to sound like old songs. It’s devotional, it’s a bit sentimental and a bit dark and I love all those things.”
‘Glad You’re Here’ opens April 3, 2021. On view until April 24, 2021 at Thinkspace Projects.
About Brad Woodfin
Brad Woodfin was born in Marblehead, Massachusetts in 1970. He studied printmaking and painting at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington before moving to Canada in 2008. Known for his uncanny ability to capture the essential spirit beyond his exquisitely executed fauna portraits, his oil paintings are thoughtful compositions of opposites: light and dark, tight and loose, motion and stillness, life and death.
Woodfin’s work has been featured in solo exhibitions across North America including: New York, Vancouver, Calgary, Seattle, and San Francisco as well as international group exhibitions and art fairs in London, Miami, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. In 2012, he was shortlisted for the prestigious Young Masters Art Prize (London, UK), which celebrates artists who pay homage to the skill and traditions of the past. He currently lives and works in Montréal.