Fuse 2

Fuse 2: David Barnes, Paul Cabuts, Andreas Ruethi and Christopher Nurse

Monday, 8 December 2014 to Friday, 6 March 2015

An exhibition of contemporary artworks by four south Wales-based artists: two photographers and two painters. This has grown out of the Fuse group exhibition which was held in the Flock Gallery, University of South Wales, Caerleon, in 2013.

FUSE 2 - David Barnes, Paul Cabuts, Chris Nurse, Andreas Ruethi

Oriel y Bont, University of South Wales, Tŷ Crawshay, Trefforest, Pontypridd CF37 lOL

8 December 2014 to 6 March 2015 (closed 24 December 2014 to 1 January 2015). The

gallery is open Mon to Thurs 8.30am to 5.30pm and Fri 8.30am to 5pm - admission is free.

This exhibition is the second in a series of annual events featuring the work of members of

staff based in the Faculty of Creative Industries at the University of South Wales who are

active practitioners in the field. Fuse was held at the Flock Gallery, Caerleon, in 2013, and

Fuse 3 is planned for Oriel y Bont in the academic year 2015-16.

Fuse 2 consists of artworks by four individuals: David Barnes (b 1974) and Paul Cabuts (b

1956) are lens-based artists; Andreas Ruethi (b 1956) is a painter; Chris Nurse (b 1962) is a

painter-printmaker who also makes three-dimensional mixed media and video works.

David Barnes's Still Deaths (2013-14) are four museum glass-encased, colour photographs

which form part of a series which studies aspects of a small village in the lower Rhymney

valley. The culture of family and community politics and intergenerational experience are

dramatised through a tense, almost film noir presentation of objects in darkened settings.

One work recalls the late Keith Arnatt's Pictures from a Rubbish Tip series of the late 1980s.

In contrast, the colour photographs of Paul Cabuts concentrate more upon formal values.

However, this does not mean that they lack content or context. His Pencaer (2011) series

references a debate about beauty and authenticity and (in his view) the wrong decision to

remove the telegraph poles which are his subject matter from their north Pembrokeshire

site. Certainly such objects are not excluded in the paintings of the late Ernest Zobole.

Chris Nurse is the most versatile and whimsical exhibitor in terms of use of media and

approach. His theme is war but he treats this topical subject obliquely. He focuses upon real

Celebrities of the Army (2012-13) from a hundred years ago rather than present-day ones to

seemingly defuse debate, but then he presents his personalities in a toy-like manner which

prompts the viewer to ask if all this is celebration, commemoration or condemnation.

Andreas Ruethi's series of small panel paintings titled Domestic Arrangements (2014) brings

an air of (perhaps disquieting) calm. These meditative but knowing still lives look back to

landmark representations by the likes of Morandi and, via the tin cans, Warhol. As the title

of his series suggests, these images point to something 'other' going on below or beyond

the surface, as in the works of Hopper. After all, his studio is a former slaughter house.