Painting Now: Five Contemporary Artists at Tate proves painting is still relevant

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Art review: Painting Now – Five Contemporary Artists at Tate Britain

Has painting lost its way over the past 50 years? Has it become an anachronism beside installation and video art?

This exhibition aims to illustrate the diversity and vitality of 21st-century practice. Just don’t come expecting pretty floral pictures – these artists, all born between 1967 and 1977 – embrace but challenge traditional working processes.

The show opens with the pleasing geometric shapes of 2006 Turner Prize-winner Tomma Abts, evolved intuitively from the first mark and all precisely 48x38cm in size.

Simon Ling’s large, vibrant urban landscapes follow – off-kilter scenes of dilapidated shopfronts that somehow convey a buoyancy.

Next, Lucy McKenzie fuses trompe l’oeil technique with political critique to explore how aesthetics underpin ideologies: what appear to be framed cork boards crammed with architectural plans and colour charts for Nazi-era living areas are entirely paint on canvas.

Catherine Story’s…

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