I run to the rock, please hide me
I run to the rock, please hide me highlights the artists recent shift in focus from sculptures to paintings on canvas, while expanding upon his array of animal subjects. Through individual portraits, Partington illustrates each animal’s distinctive personality. While appearing in various skins, scales, furs, and feathers, his animal depictions acquire a human aspect as their focused gaze suggests they are consciously posing for the artist. A major part of this exhibition features a series of works titled Hiding that the artist began last year. In this series, each work portrays an animal in their attempt to hide, often positioned behind a hill covered in green grass, while only ahead or rear humorously sticks out from behind. A seach subject displays the desire to hide from reality, we observe and realize the pointlessness of their attempt. Meanwhile, a bright blue sky in the background adds to the comedic atmosphere, conveying a sense of relief and acceptancein each scene. Alongside the Hiding series, a significant work created this year is The Ark, a sculpture that was a direct response to the pandemicandan interpretation of recent quarantine experiences. With the ark as a metaphor, Partington illustrates the act of seeking refuge with our closest companions. As in the familiar biblical story, animals ranging from the domesticated to the wild line up in pairs to board the ark, which is represented by a cinder block. Depicted in his characteristic painted wood cutouts, the animals of Partington’s ark make up the essential components of his creative world through which we recognize impressions of our human presence.