Criena Court
2 August - 24 August 2017

Exhibition Opening: Wednesday 2 August from 6-8pm

Sydney-based artist Criena Court’s latest body of work explores the phenomenon of the rainbow (spectrum) as a metaphor for the unknowable aspects of our everyday reality.


“In the days before my father passed away, a faceted crystal orb he had given me had started to catch the light in a new way. Every time I entered the room a spectrum caught me square in the eye, casting vivid, individual colours, one by one as you passed by it. It was striking. I noticed it. I paused to see it and explore the changes as my position shifted in relation to it. Yet, I didn’t think much of it in the flow of life at the time. I didn’t realise those were my fathers final days. I knew he was drifting, but I did not consider a more mystical aspect to the experience – that it was a sign that a veil between worlds was thinning.

Refraction has since served as moment to pause. To connect with the mysterious within the everyday. 

A moment to step away from the ordinary and to feel the spaciousness of that moment, giving new light to what was there all along.”

Criena Court, 2017.

Through a consideration of the spectrum and the phenomenon of the rainbow Criena Court’s latest body of work occupies the grey space between science and mysticism. For Court, the spectrum serves as a mysterious reminder of the paradox which is implicit within the act of seeing. When we incidentally see a rainbow we are drawn in, but also reminded of the flawed and imperfect nature of our own perception, and the crucial role we play in competing the viewing experience – whether viewing a work of art or viewing the everyday. Refraction becomes a symbol of the intersection between the quantifiable aspects of our perception (the physical aspect of seeing) and the unknowable aspects of our reality and the self.

Incorporating neon, photography and experimental print assemblages, Court uses reflective surfaces and light to draw the viewer into an experience with each work. By drawing attention to the mystical within the everyday, each artwork calls for a moment of contemplation. A quiet space. Beckoning the viewer to pause, take a breath and find space.

Throughout Court’s new work, the spectrum becomes a metaphor for the unknowable, it presents no answers, only experiments and visual proposals to create pause. Inviting the viewer to reside momentarily in the space beyond what we comprehend. The unmanifest. The realm where everything resides.

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Max Lawrence White
3 May - 25 May 2024