October, 2011

Bitumen, Gold, Opium & Crows

October 5th, 2011


Exhibition by Justin Mills

14 October – 10 November  2011 at WTF Gallery, Bangkok

Opening Reception: Friday 14 October 2011, 7pm @ WTF Gallery

A Smear Of Gold In The Window And The Jewel Of Her Sin 

 ‘To me, paintings are not silent and music is not invisible, so painting is just as much about listening as it is about seeing. I’m just trying to do something that I feel is valid and viable, to make a kind of image that I’ve never seen or heard before, a painting with a quiet intensity, as compelling and enduring for me as a good Tom Waits track, with an effect that is always instantaneous." - Justin Mills

After exhibiting his 48 Portraits Of God last year, Justin Mills has produced a new series of paintings inspired by the music and lyrics of American singer-songwriter Tom Waits, the man who once said that ‘there ain’t no devil there’s just God when he’s drunk’. Mills is still intrigued by the highly-charged symbolic materials of earthy bitumen and ethereal gold but he now makes the rhythms and rhymes of the lexicon, the darkness and the light, an integral part of the ‘visual’, significantly transforming the spatial nature of visual art into something markedly temporal.

The iambic beat of the exhibition title subtly suggests an interplay between rich layers and juxtapositions of opposites; rubber-modified bitumen and spirit-based gold paint are thrown together with coloured acrylics to render mesmerising effects of appearing/disappearing, invading/dissolving, solace/menace all of which are echoed in the uniquely visceral and lung-crunching voice of Tom Waits whose music gets played more than anything else in Mills’ studio.

His subtle intertextuality and mimicry, engaging himself in a complex and time-consuming creative process of drawing, photographing, and computer-editing, and an integral approach to style, sources and subject matter, results in a unique, innovative rendition of beguiling, multi-layered surfaces and enigmatic images, that makes it difficult to dissociate him from the current renewal and vigour of contemporary painting. 

English text by Rathsaran Sireekan, art critic.


All the paintings will be available for sale. For list of paintings and prices, please contact the gallery.


Justin Mills’ biography

Justin Mills was born in the UK and has been based in Bangkok since 1996. He is a graduate of Bristol’s University of the West of England and Santiniketan, Visva-Bharati University in India, where he was awarded an MA in Fine Art in 1994. Mills has exhibited his paintings internationally including ‘A Brief View Of Everything’ at Chulalongkorn University Art Center in 2010, the 2nd Bangkok Triennial of International Print and Drawing at the Bangkok Art and Culture Center in 2009, ‘Brahma to Bapu’ at the Visual Arts Gallery in Delhi, India, curated by Rakhi Sarkar in 2002, and a collaborative installation at the Outpost Venice Biennale in Venice in 1995.


Visitor Information:

WTF Cafe & Gallery
7 Sukhumvit Soi 51
Bangkok 10110
BTS: Thong Lor Station

Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday, 4-10pm
02 662 6246 

For further information please contact:
Somrak Sila – Managing Director
Tel: (66) 2 662 6246, (66) 89 926 5474
Email: somrak@wtfbangkok.com



October 5th, 2011

Saturday 15 October, 9PM

4PLAYERS will spin a superior selection of pressed wax Cosmic Diso, Deep House, Retro Funk, Afrobeat and live ocular masseuse FREELENSER will project and manipulate a live-mixed montage of colourful canopies, film edits and assorted eye-spinners


A tutorial from 4PLAYERS: 
“In more detail:  ‘Retro funk’, just in the sense of playing some classic funk tracks from the 70s, plus a funk tracks from the early to mid 80s with a more electronic feel (think of Prince).  ‘Afrobeat’, meaning afro-funk mostly from the 70s or modern reworkings of that sound (think of Fela Kuti).  ‘Deep House’, is a basic generic description for slower paced groovy house that you don’t have to dance to (but can if you want) that is sometimes soulful, sometimes melodic and always beautiful.  ‘Cosmic Disco’ (confusingly also called ‘Afro’) is a micro-genre that developed in the early 80s and generally involved slow paced, deep disco-ish sounds often with spacey synthesizers and electronic percussion.  If you’re interested you can check it out on wikipedia:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afro/Cosmic_music.  Aside from that we will probably play some more ‘traditional’ but slow paced and deep disco, some Italo Disco tracks and maybe some Old School Hip-Hop.  Hope that description’s not overkill! ;-)