Marlon Red – „Solaris“ Paintings

On the walls of the Basement Gallery in Essen, the artist Marlon Red presents a series of dark iconic works coming straight from the night’s eeriest hour. Ambiguous geometries seem to pivot silently into each other on the surface of canvases. The dark shine of some of the shapes feels anxiety-inducing, whereas the lighter surrounding shapes feel at peace, both working together towards a certain sense of unsure embrace.

The texture of light, patiently applied touch by touch to give relief and meaning, feels somehow not just right, but downright healing. Like the grainy light of dawn comes to bring closure to a night spent in a wake, painting too can be a kind of ritual and a path of self-knowledge. For Marlon Red, painting at night, at that special moment when the universe seems to „click“, has become an act of care and love. It is, more or less, her own spirituality.

The „Solaris“ series may be about inner visions or symbolic landscapes, to which the paintings serve as a sort of maps. Either way, if seen as plots, the shapes on the canvases come to life as lands, gardens or islands seen from above. Then, the white grain floating mysteriously above the plots could maybe be air in visible form: mist. Through its title, the series hints at the hommage it pays to the supreme artist of mist, of dawn, of meaningful silence and of the things seen from above: Andrei Tarkovsky. From the wild horses in the medieval-themed Andrei Rublev to the „islands of memory“ from the sci-fi Solaris, the intersections are not coincidental. Between Solaris the film and the painting series, the image ultimately bonding the two is that of mist hovering over the face of the waters, turning void and darkness into tangible memories, metaphor of both divine creation and of dealing with absence and longing.

Marlon Red’s visions are definitely cosmic, but their implications are deeply personal. When it happens at a certain tender time at dark just before day, art is unboundin and fulfilling.

Alexandru MIRCEA
Paris, 15.02.2024


Artist Film Marlon Red, by Andreas Clarysse.
Link Video: 

CROSSOVER. Duo Show Mit Jürgen Pass Exhibition Project by Galerie Obrist im Essen
@ Foryouandyourcustomers, Sammlung.
Solid Sides HYBRID. Performance by Marlon Red, Galerie Obrist

Lapidarium Museum Novigrad. Into the Void HUMAN.
Performance-Video-Sound Installation by Marlon Red. Sept. 2023.
Artist Residency.