The Hepworth Wakefield is the first public gallery to present a solo exhibition of works by Andrew Cranston. Andrew Cranston: What made you stop here? features 38 new and recent paintings that range from large-scale canvases to intimate works painted on old linen-bound book covers, comprising subjects that include still life, landscape, seascape, portraits, and interior scenes.
Engaging with the layered emotional quality and pathos of everyday life, as well as a strong sense of place, be it real or imagined, Cranston’s evocatively titled paintings contain compelling and intriguing narratives that have the collaged dream-like quality of recollection and what he calls ‘creative misremembering’.
His formally inventive and highly intimate paintings find new ways to connect the personal and art historical past with the present through a gamut of visual and literary references and shared experiences. The paintings exploit what is perhaps only glanced existing in the periphery of vision and embody a sense of revelation, wonder and oddness in familiar situations. Connections and highly personal associations are deeply entwined in these works creating a rewarding and memorable experience.
On display at The Hepworth Wakefield for the first time is one of Cranston’s most recent paintings entitled, A snake came to my coffee table on a hot, hot day to drink there (2023), which has been generously acquired for Wakefield’s art collection through the JW Anderson Collections Fund. It features what Cranston says is ‘an intrusion of something alien into the familiar, an unlikely presence and threat into the domestic’. A large number of other works in the exhibition, lent from private collections, have never been shown publicly before.