Art critic T.J McNamara’s comments on Peter Hackett’s recent exhibition here at Parnell Gallery –

“… ArtWeek also provides work at the opposite end of abstraction, notably the painting of flowers. Most potent in terms of paint and colour is the exhibitionThe Honeymooners’ Bed by Peter Hackett at Parnell Gallery.

The richness of these works lies in the heavy impasto of the paint. This conveys the form of the multiplicity of flowers that make up the fields of his paintings and a sense of excitement about the way oil paint can powerfully model their presence and involve the viewer in the making of the work.

The artist is quoted as saying, “I am not just using oil paint to describe a meadow; I am using a meadow to describe the potential of oil paint.”

The composition moves in a level perspective across fields of flowers and shrubs in vivid colour. They do not rise to a skyline but generally toward trees that make a satisfying boundary to the riot of different hues. The modelling of flowers often gives way to dark touches of trunks in avenues of trees.

The thick nature of the paint confers qualities on these paintings that can only be felt in front of them. They give great emphasis to the movement of the hand as it creates the image and the unifying overall texture of the painting.

The paintings are uniform in style but individual in their composition of colour.

Whether it be the potent red of a field of poppies or the delightful contrast of green and white blooms, every painting, though related to the rest, has a different, complex colour scheme.

It works because of the special nature of the viewers’ response to a vision of natural beauty, especially the flowers of spring and summer.

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