Good Night Moon

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"Each painting in this series is a window into my personal experiences, blending the lines between reality and dreams, much like the twilight moments before sleep", these are the words of Icelandic artist Georg Óskar regarding his highly anticipated third solo exhibition at JD Malat Gallery, Good Night Moon.

On view from the 1st of February until the 2nd of March 2024, this exhibition unveils Óskar’s new body of work. Deeply personal and emotionally charged, Óskar’s Good Night Moon offers a painted conversation regarding the different perspectives of fatherhood, the highs and lows, the joyous days and sleepless nights, all translated onto canvas.

This exhibition consists of 12 new works serving as a visual documentation of his everyday life, tackling themes of mental health, parenthood, sleep depravity and the mundane. Good Night Moon depicts convivial scrapbook-like abstractions that are humorous, sarcastic and abundant in nature, exuding intense energies reminiscent of neo-expressionists Basquiat, Baselitz and abstract-expressionist Willem de Kooning. Portraying subjects infused with emotional intensity, Óskar employs a muted colour palette that is dictated by his medium and strengthened through the use of cold wax which imparts texture resulting in a subdued and matte finish. “I want the thickness and the richness the oil has to offer; I want things to get messy so I can organise that mess”.

He began working on Good Night Moon just one month after the birth of his daughter, as Óskar states "the title reflects my bedtime ritual with my daughter, capturing the magical moments of night and fitting perfectly with the exhibition's theme." The drastic schedule change when caring for a new-born is a collective feeling parents know all too well, free-time now seems that of a distant memory, however, Óskar found solace in his studio: “It became a space where I processed life and time amidst the demands of parenthood”.

Over the years we have witnessed Óskar’s work in exhibitions Pain Thing and After the Punch, observing and criticising the mundane aspects of contemporary life through humorous detailing and cartoon motifs. Good Night Moon surpasses the lens of the observer, depicting instead, a raw and vulnerable lived experience that resonates with all who view it. This exhibition celebrates the transitional state of Óskar’s artistic chrysalis, blurring the lines between spontaneity and intricacy, portraying compositions that appear more hysterical and integrate text to engage viewer’s in each painting’s deeper meaning.

To Óskar, painting is a form of meditation that enables healing, creative freedom and self-expression, “The joy and struggle of painting serve as my primary motivators, it allows me to be myself without any predefined roles”. The relatability of Good Night Moon is reflected through its titles and depictions, ‘SURVIVING FATHERHOOD’, ‘MAMMA MAMMA’, ‘INSOMNIA I CAN’T GET NO SLEEP’, each composition has an emotional correspondence with Óskar, referring to his work as forms of “Self-portraiture” that act as personal outlets on display for a universal demographic. There is a synergy to be found in Óskar’s artistic style and the naive themes Óskar employs, portraying humour and honesty in a world that shamelessly lies and deceives.

Presented on the first floor of JD Malat Gallery, this exhibition welcomes its visitors to explore the personal artistic journey Georg Óskar embarks on, displaying raw themes and stories relating to his new-found fatherhood. Authentic and powerful in portrayal, those who view Good Night Moon will discover its subjectivity, allowing each composition to tell its own narrative.