Ian Williams: Painting the Unreal
Location Convent Gallery
From Saturday 17 August 2019 - 10:00am
To Sunday 06 October 2019 - 04:00pm
Ian Williams’ practice explores the reality of videogame objects through contemporary still life painting. He attempts to gain a better understanding of what virtual objects are, whether they are considered ‘real’, and their ontological importance. How do we understand visually interactive objects that cannot be physically touched? Still life painting is well suited to this task, as it has long been concerned with the visual scrutiny of objects.
The majority of virtual objects created for photorealistic videogames are designed to mimic the visual properties of physical world objects, often programmed to behave in a Newtonian manner via a physics engine. This provides the user/viewer with a familiar and relatable environment to encourage interaction and engagement. During his recent Honours project, Williams developed a process for extracting found virtual objects from video game environments. This has enabled him to accrue a collection of found virtual objects from which he creates virtual still life compositions, or what he refers to as ‘3D collage’, to paint from. Within these 3D collages, he plays with the arrangement of the objects through scaling, rotating, and warping, and discards phenomenon such and gravity and forces of collision to create a new space for still life painting.