Charles Avery | What is it about the red-headed girl with the weak chin? New Portraits of the Onomatopoeians
31 May 2018 – 20 Jul 2018

Studio SALES di Norberto Ruggeri is proud to present at the gallery the new solo exhibition by Charles Avery:
What is it about the red-headed girl with the weak chin? New Portraits of the Onomatopoeians.

Since 2004 Scottish artist Charles Avery (Oban, 1973) has dedicated his practice to the description of a fictional island which he continues to elaborate, with its own population, customs and philosophies, nature and architecture, expressed in the form of large-scale drawings, sculptures, installations, texts and moving images.

This large series of works created within a specific framework is rooted in Charles Avery‘s own life and upbringing on the
Isle of Mull off the West coast of Scotland and could be interpreted as a philosophical meditation on art- making
and different ideas of truth.

What is it about the red-headed girl with the weak chin? New Portraits of the Onomatopoeians presents 9 new works on paper, all mounted on linen and made specifically for the roman exhibition.

These are portrait-studies works and several of these are multi-figures. Charles Avery has developed and isolated the previous portraits of the Islanders (the inhabitants of Onomatopoeia) producing with these new drawings a sort of tactile impressions, making them a kind of photographic and social reportage-study. Also the choice to remove frames and glasses wants to allow the maximum degree of intimacy and contact with the subjects and the works.
Through the process of inventing this fiction known as The Islanders, which began over twelve years ago, I have come to realise two things.

The more of that is set down, the less I feel I am inventing, the more I feel I am simply discovering the place.
Furthermore, the responsibility I have had to bring all of this about, to be the designer and namer of all things, has given me an appreciation of the detail of the world that I inhabit.

The Islanders walk like you and me, dress like you and me. They have a look, undoubtably, and there is a reflection of magic of the place, of the old system of signs and idols, in their eyes, but it is a familiarity and authenticity that I am seeking, a synthesis of the truth.

With these portraits I want to emancipate the “Onomatopoeians” * from the epic fiction in which they are players, for a moment: posing for a picture, reading a book, throwing a ball, staring into space…
* Onomatopoeian: Inhabitant of Onomatopoeia, the capital city, port and gateway to the Island.
Charles Avery, May 2018

Charles Avery (b.1973, lives and works in London and Mull, UK) has had major solo exhibitions at: David Roberts Arts Foundation (2017); GEM, Den Haag (2015); FRAC Ile-de-France Le Plateau Paris, Kunstverein Hanover and EX3 Florence (2010); Parasol Unit London, National Gallery of Modern Art Edinburgh, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen Rotterdam(2008). He represented Scotland at the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007), and has participated in numerous major group exhibitions, including ‘British Art Show 7’ (2010-11), ‘Altermodern: Fourth Tate Triennial’ (2009, curated by Nicolas Bourriaud), and the 2007 Lyon and Athens Bienniales. 


Piazza Dante, 2