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Thee show titled Barkley: Le nu mis en scène, features the work of Daniel Barkley for the first time in his home province. He is, for the time being , a little known painter, well on his way to earning a place among the most esteemed artists in Quebec . Barkley, born in 1962 in Montreal, holds a Master's degree in Fine Arts from Concordia University, and has been painting for about 20 years. He has 16 exhibitions under his belt, most of them one-man shows, and several of his paintings are in private collections. In 2000, he was awarded the A.J.Casson Medal for excellence in watercolor by the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolor and in 2002 was awarded first prize by the Society of Canadian Artist.
The dramatic intensity Daniel Barkley's paintings emanate attracts and holds the eye with such strength that the works disturb, fascinate, and intrigue the viewer. We try to understand, to scrutinize the expressions of the figures, to connect to what they are experiencing. At times, we want to be there, to take part in the ritual, the dream, the drama that is unfolding before us. Barkley leads us back into those unresolved, worried, anxious places, deep within ourselves, without ever lapsing into the facile or the morbid. The viewer might feel uneasy faced with certain cathartic [bloody, cruel] scenes, faced with the absurd realism of the paintings which feature nightmarish imagery or with the fixed stares of some of the figures. Nevertheless, a seemingly magical attraction radiates from these works....Corral de locos .
In all of these paintings, the nude is featured openly, simply without artifice. Stripped of its clothing-mask, endowed with a raw, never indecent, nudity; the expressive power of the figure increases tenfold.
In this way, it seems to convey the whole truth of its emotion, the intense reality of the inner drama being lived, the fragility of its physical shell. The body, sometimes covered by...