Stephen Polatch


instllation view showing paintings and window
09/09/2022 - 10/15/2022

Margot Samel is excited to announce Stephen Polatch’s first US solo exhibition, Swan-Road. The title of the exhibition draws from the Old English word swan-rād, a kenning for the word “sea,” that is at the same time poetic and literal. Polatch dissolves the complex hierarchy of natural, architectural, and human orders, set within the urban milieu of Glasgow in his new works. Synoptic views of the city are parted, drawn like curtains, to reveal wild interstitial spaces where the real and fantastical mix. In his paintings, smiling flowers, magical fountains, and medieval castles are seen alongside wind turbines, pylons, and highways. The artist’s images are fictions within fictions, full of vivid spontaneity, and unsettled by disorienting vantage points and surreal twists. They prompt us to examine what ornate variations of reality might exist unseen, within, or alongside, our own.