Arundel Contemporary is delighted to present Wish You Were Here, Kate Shooter’s first solo exhibition with the gallery.

In this show Kate Shooter presents us with a bundle of contradictions: cartoon-like bold lines cut across textures of whimsical opacity; colours that roar, then gracefully fade. Her work is part graphic novel, part white-washed graffiti wall, part diarised scrawling.

The text and titles are simultaneously a wry dig at our modern obsession with wall-hung mantras and a glimpse into the artist’s plaintive notes to herself, as she blunders through the pitfalls of daily life.

Whilst the act of creation for Kate is an intuitive one, time grappling with formal qualities of line, colour and space allows a narrative of sorts to bubble up through the layers. And so, her work teeters on the brink of tangible, neither entirely abstract nor entirely figurative.

She says, “It is this suggestion of narrative, this in-between world, that most preoccupies me in making work. I love the precarious balance between crass and subtle, joyful and dark, object and subject. The sweet spot where opposite qualities exist side by side illustrates, for me, most clearly the paradox of living.”

In this body of work there also seems to be a deep sense of something missing, and of nostalgia. The show is called ‘Wish You Were Here’, though who the ‘you’ is, or where the ‘here’ might be is something of an enigma…

Kate explains, “I’ve been thinking a lot about the Welsh word ‘hiraeth’ recently. It has no clear English translation, but describes a kind of homesickness and nostalgia for both place and people; a longing for the past, as well as a desire for an idealised future. This yearning also describes the battle of process in painting itself; the artist’s desire to idealise and to use the sum total of experience to arrive at a magical place.’’