In recent years, Oliver Perkins has developed a register of material processes that both promote and disrupt the physical confines of painting. Perkins’s diverse and energetic works range from large-scale austere line paintings, to small, dense, three-dimensional constructions. All his works draw on a range of materials typically associated with the process of making a painting: including canvas, cardboard, dye, rabbit skin glue, ink, stretcher bars, dowel, and staples.
Perkins’ rich palette and compositional strategies allude to a range of abstract painting’s most recognizable idioms, yet the grandness of these legacies is offset both by the modesty of scale and his painterly/handyman tinkering, and by the perversity of the cuts, bleeds and implants. In making a painting Perkins mines both the subjective gesture and the contingent event, refusing a false choice between the two. The prevailing narrative is that of the studio, that provides the terrain and materials for ludic experimentation.