February 7 - March 11, 2001
Francalanza lives, paints and works in the Walters Falls area of county Grey, producing work which addresses the theme "figure in the landscape".
There is a surrealist quality to the work, which derives from the irrational scale and spatial relationships of objects to each other, the paintings are assembled as one would a collage, which is not necessarily evident in the finished work due to his own particular process of working the encaustic medium, (a traditional painting technique involving the use of hot wax and oil paint).
Specific motifs run through the work, one being a lump of potter's clay that finds itself a mountain (Dreaming Planet #2,) harbouring images of fire and industry, this shape which also finds it's echo in Cézanne's most famous of landscape subjects "Mont Saint Victoire", which itself is found situated amongst the Cézanne like still-life that is rendered in a black ink drawing sitting as a ghostly apparition on the painting's surface (Approaching Cézanne's Table,).
The art historical reference that Temperate Waters... is apparent here also appears in other works, operating as a symbol or point of reference and thus creating a psychological tension with the other figurative elements. As in (Temperate Waters,) here the relaxed form of a female floating in a benign body of water has superimposed over her left breast another water borne figure, that of one immersed in the river Styx and struggling for salvation from their water-bound hell. The play or relationship of scale from one image to the next seems arbitrary, as if time and place are fractured and bear little relation; other than in their archetypal conjuring which leaves the viewer with more questions than answers.
Tony Massett, Curator