Darren Baker Gallery Private View 12.05.2016

Realism vs Abstract

The Darren Baker Gallery is one of my favourite galleries to visit as I equally enjoy the pieces and the crowd they attract and this past Thursday they welcomed a new collection.

As I viewed the artworks, I began to analyse the two contrasting approaches to fine art: the idea of portraying reality through accurate depictions of a chosen subject and not portraying reality at all but successfully generating emotions and thought processes in its viewers. I thought about which one I enjoyed more and why.


Living and working in London, I have grown accustomed to not being as impressed with the resemblance to reality as I have with the conceptual and the abstract associations that artworks provide. I can appreciate Anish Kapoor’s ArcelorMittal Orbit (an 114.5 metre sculpture in Stratford) as much as Darren Baker’s Tight (an almost photo-like charcoal drawing of hands). It seems that these days everyone is an artist, yet for some cases I think the most appropriate term would be ‘creative being’. There is a multitude of audiences to impress and many mediums to experiment with.


ArcelorMittal Orbit, Anish Kapoor
ArcelorMittal Orbit, Anish Kapoor
Tight, Darren Baker
Tight, Darren Baker

The difference between the two pieces above is that the sculpture allows my mind to wonder and question its existence and the illustration reminds me that I have inferior drawing capabilities.


There is a duality in art viewing: creativity goes into producing the works and creativity is also required by the viewer to interpret the artworks. Therefore, are viewers robbed of their own creativity when they view realistic artworks? This is not to say that realistic works cannot also trigger a personal reaction.

When I saw this piece, I thought: LIFE, FRIDAY, FUN.

To anyone else, it could have meant nothing beyond a glass of bubbly.


Despite having been to the Darren Bakery Gallery multiple times already, I always feel a jolt of excitement when I remember there is more to see downstairs- and usually more my kind of sensorial experience.

Lots of colour, and a particular interactive piece that I wasn’t actually sure I could sit on despite the plaque saying PLEASE SIT DOWN. It felt good to physically connect with a sculpture and most importantly, be invited to.

Overall, favourite works were that of Richard Gower, known for his fine art and sculptures and who has over the years developed his own unique style of painting in his Reflections series:

What do you see? Souls being dragged to hell?



On my way back home, I stumbled across another private viewing taking place at The Different Gallery. Curiosity got the best of me and I got to see this:

Ultimately, each gallery has a different vibe- generally the layout is the same (pieces hanging on white walls) and of course the pieces are different, but I think the lighting is what creates the atmosphere. Do you prefer night viewings or day viewings?


Overall the evening was stimulating, the prosecco contributed as well.

Tata for now.


by KK

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Comments: 3
  • #1

    Damon Trueblood (Wednesday, 01 February 2017 03:58)

    Excellent article. I will be experiencing some of these issues as well..

  • #2

    Jenise Linsley (Thursday, 02 February 2017 01:17)

    Hello there, You have done a great job. I will definitely digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I am sure they'll be benefited from this web site.

  • #3

    Karel Kingsley (Sunday, 05 February 2017 15:52)

    Thank you Damon and Jenise. I'll be sure to continue writing and sharing my experiences!