C O L L E C T O R S'
P R E - S A L E

Welcome to the Smithson Collectors' online pre-sale for Julian Brown's 'Relic' paintings.

Artworks are now available to pre-purchase via our online checkout on a first come first served basis until 3pm BST Thursday 30th May 2024. Following this pre-sale period, the artworks will go live on our main website and social media for the official launch.

For an in depth overview of the collection including further images and framing notes please enjoy our collection catalogue below:

Julian Brown: Relic Paintings

Smithson Projects presents Julian Brown’s latest series of ‘Relic’ paintings. Influenced by recollected memories and artefacts which draw upon his mother’s Polish heritage, the collection brings together eleven paintings of the same size created over different points in time.

Constructed in an array of rich pigmented colours alongside softer, muted hues, each painting in the series exudes a distinctive atmosphere. Applying the paint in thick, layered surfaces onto heavy furnishing linen, Brown embeds a process of systems, forms and thoughts deep into the very fabric of each piece. The result is a highly textured and tactile finish, giving each painting a weathered appearance as if aged by the passing of time, yet distinctly alive as the layers of paint impart a history of embraced mistakes integral to Brown’s creative process.

“I like to think of these paintings as relics, each work etched into by a world of folklore and tradition.”

In this way, whilst the paintings all begin from the same systematic starting point, each composition must embark on its own journey to discover its individual language, following on from what has materialised in previous works and interweaving references to Brown’s childhood and Polish folk art traditions. The outcome is  a series of visually distinct yet interconnected paintings, which each contribute to a wider collective story:

“I like the works to be as alive as possible, to include all the mistakes and the history of the process. I’m interested in pushing the process as far as I can, the tensions between order and chaos, structure and collapse and the moment where things start to fall apart.

Everything that happens in a painting is a result of what’s happened in previous paintings. So shapes are a development of simple gestural sweeps of the brush. But as these forms evolve, they start to take on their own significance and create their own language, setting off thoughts, sensations that unlock the subconscious.

I like to think of these paintings as relics, each work etched into by a world of folklore and tradition.”

— Julian Brown