The old and the new collide in a new exhibition at the Kildare Gallery. The ESREVATEM exhibition draws on 27 years of artist Jonathan Dickson’s work and layers it into a new medium on the Cardano blockchain. Dickson’s archive of digital photography and film, oil and digital painting is layered and worked into a new and highly original collection. The result is visually stunning, intelligent, mesmerizing. The Kildare Gallery realises that the traditional art world and the NFT world are going to move closer to each other and they are supporting this medium and their artists at the outset.
In this collection, Jonathan uses his creativity and intelligence by using data-driven machine learning algorithms to generate gorgeously coloured and moving abstractions. The codes are the building block of the art and are the starting point of the collection. The collection is both digital and physical as reflects the world we live in now.
Using photographs taken from the past 27 years as source material, Dickson allowed the memories attached to them manifest themselves visually using the photographs along with physical oil painting and digital painting. The results are visual representations of how the artist experiences memory. They drop in as layered, almost fluidly changing images and they also tend to have very strongly coloured elements to them. Sometimes one memory stream is abruptly interrupted by another one, which takes the visual to a completely different place. Sometimes a colour sparks the change and sometimes it’s an image. It’s the perfect marriage of creative ability and technical ability and the collection is unique because of it.
Dickson has been experimenting with digital art since the early 90’s – his first digital painting was completed in the 1980s on a quantel paintbox. Its always been an area of creative fascination for him and is now a viable means of expression.
The exhibition work is sold as NFT’s. They are poised to transform the art world, changing not only how art is bought and sold, but also what kind of art we value, and which artists. An NFT, or non-fungible token, is a unique digital representation of a work of art. It’s a certificate of authenticity, recorded on a blockchain. Creating an NFT does two things: It provides proof of ownership and it guarantees scarcity. They have become an important marketplace with technical and computer people.
The Kildare Gallery is based in the grounds of Carton House. Its period detail home belies its modern and contemporary collections and aesthetics. ESRAVATEM runs at the Kildare Gallery from 30 April.