b. 1974, UK, lives and works in Paris
© Aurelien Mole
Michael Pemberton is greatly interested in one unignorable human truth we all share; that we live life split between our outer and inner experiences, and the struggle this causes every one of us.
In his practice, a play between our real world and an imagined one allows for relentless roaming, searching and curiosity. Accidents and surprises are encouraged and combined with modes of destruction, to open up new possibilities and hidden paths. He creates references to various periods of art history mixed with diverse motifs, links and codes.
The paintings are worked out on the canvas which allows for his own concerns and reflections to become imbued as a personal commentary of our present age.
Study, Kinetic Head 3, 2022
Charcoal on paper
159 x 107 cm
About the Artist
Michael Pemberton was educated in Fine Arts at the Chelsea School of Art, London, and furthered his studies at UCLA, Los Angeles, the Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford, and the Slade School of Fine Art, University College of London
The first twelve years of Pemberton’s practice was largely abstract investigations. Concerns about climate change in 2003 led to his first solo exhibition of paintings, The Toxic Series, in 2006 in London.
Over the subsequent ten years, Pemberton lived and worked in New York and Los Angeles. He explored questions of internal and external journeys, ambiguity and indefinability. These investigations resulted in abstract paintings on canvas and works on paper. Solo and group exhibitions of this work were held in 2016, 2017, 2018 at galleries in Los Angeles and Vancouver.
In 2018, Pemberton addressed physical human form in his work. He aimed to bring about a sensation of human believability and interpretable feeling in the imaginary works, yet avoiding the interference of realism. The resulting works on canvas and paper were grouped into four successive series and shown at solo and group shows in 2021, 2022, 2023 in galleries in London, Paris and Mexico City.
Today, Michael Pemberton paints self-invented works inhabiting imaginary surroundings obliquely influenced by the outside world we experience as a personal commentary of our present age. Though centered on humans and their activity, the diverse and challenging narratives exist with conflicts and links to other themes, motifs and mix art historical references.
Collections & Exhibitions
[info available soon]