The Alan Cristea Gallery is holding an exhibition of new work by Mick Moon entitled Letters from India, which will consist of new paintings, monotypes and prints. The pictures speak with both images and words about the relationship between India and England.
The artist works either on paintings or monotypes, which have layers of imprinted and collaged elements fixed onto a backboard of canvas. The compositions of these new works include square tea chest shapes and stencilling overlaid with fragments of dark flowers, maps, gripping lines, and Indian objects. There is an element of conflict and diffusion in the formal structure of the images, and their titles, such as Old Power and Imports, frame an evocation of traces left by Empire and colonialism: Exotic Indian teas and spices are juxtaposed with trading company names and a map of the East End of London, location of Whitechapel's Indian community, and the wharves and warehouses of the dock-lands.
Mick Moon has shown in earlier, more abstract prints the influence of the exotic colour, lights and artefacts of India on his sensibility. Letters to India reveals a more figurative, dramatic and emotive response to cultural cross-over, an elegiac kind of Orientalism.