"Love Token" by Cecilia Charlton

August 19, 2021

Our 10th Contemporary Collaboration installation is now on view in our Battersea Gallery window, showcasing the work of the talented artist Cecilia Charlton. Cecilia is a London-based American artist. She received a BFA Painting in 2015 from Hunter College in NYC, graduating summa cum laude, and an MA Painting from the Royal College of Art in 2018.

When she visited the Robert Young Antiques Gallery, the object that spoke to her was a paint decorated Marriage Cupboard– the geometry of the structure and the floral motif hand-painted onto the surface called to her on an aesthetic and intuitive level. Through speaking with Robert, Cecilia discovered that the painted Marriage Cupboard would have been created as a wedding gift, and then filled with textiles. In the 1800s, textiles such as bedlinens or tablecloths were a prized possession in the household, and typically created by the bride’s family. 

She creates technicolour, highly-patterned textile works that question notions of medium by bringing together traditions of painting, craft, abstraction, and folk art. Shape-shifting compositions appear with a visual flickering as their forms simultaneously subsume and embrace, and their colours confound and complement. Aesthetically revolving around formal references to abstraction, the works’ titles often reveal autobiographical content, such as issues of mortality, drug use, sexuality, family relationships, and mental health.

Within this installation, Cecilia aims to mull over the link between love, textiles and painted expression so she chose to base her project on an elaborately decorated Marriage Cupboard. 

The window display will be on exhibition until 4th September 2021 and all works are available for purchase. 

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