en Baretto’s work is magnetic – you can’t help but get up close and examine a little deeper. With his Painting Painting series – reminiscent of Jackson Pollack’s abstract expressionism and 70s psychedelia – it’s easy to get lost in the paint and gesture-laden canvas.
In recent experiments, Baretto has added weaves made from rope and twine to his repertoire. “I've used rope and twine in my practice over the last few years now,” he explains. “I was always drawn to brick-layers line and multi-purpose rope found in hardware stores because, I guess, I could see irony in the intended function of these materials and their possible interpretation into craft.”
Works featured in Weaves Painting Paintings at Gallery A.S. will feature the kind of luminous, psychedelic colours for which Baretto has made his name, taking their inspiration from early experiments in the somewhat kitsch, crafty medium.
“The first weave I made was a couple of years ago,” he says. “They started out pretty basic while I was teaching myself how to build and use a loom. Since then, I’ve realised that I could use this process to interpret my abstract drawings, as a way of kind of cementing those immediate, loose marks by feeding them through a process of labour.
“I like that progression from fast, immediate abstract mark-making through to digital drawing while I play with colour and scale, and then back to labour.”
Ben Baretto shows Weaves Painting Paintings at Gallery A.S. from October 25 to November 10.