The inevitable trace 

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Focussed primarily on painting and drawing, with forays into the world of printmaking, the work of Dean Gazeley eludes the fickle oscillations of time, and aspires to capture both the impetuous freshness of the moment, and the calm consistency of the eternal, effectively resolving this seeming paradox and contradiction.  

When confronted with his work one is drawn into the quiet contemplation of the intemporal.  The elemental principles that dictate his artistic reason and orient his life demonstrate the immediate and repeated conviction that that which persists endures, and that which endures remains essential.  

In his work the laws of nature prove indispensable. It has been said of Gazeley that "the vastness of nature and its forms are, and always have been, the fundamental source of his creative enrichment." He strives not to imitate nature, but to cultivate and construct a force that emulates the beauty inherent within it.

For him, the process of painting parallels that assumed by nature in composing its elements. It is a process that, though scrupulously observed through the ages of eastern and western thought, has not lost its appeal or mystery.  It is a process governed by rigor, internal necessity,  the condensation of function, and the achievement of meaning through the greatest possible economy of media. In a word, it is the inevitable character of nature, as described by Angelus Silesius: "the rose without vanity, blooms because it blooms".

Thus the paintings of Dean Gazeley reflect this economy, this absence of vanity, or in other words, a parsimony that evokes the essence common to an entire species (human, for example) and at the same time the specific gestures peculiar to each individual form, each captured body.  This is a difficult balancing act of visual expression wherein one stroke less might reveal a deficiency, and one stroke more would invite an excess.

Commenting on Gazeley's work, painter and poet Jose Ignacio Maldonado has written: "the work of Dean Gazeley reflects a profound knowledge of drawing and painting, stemming from  a nineteenth century academic tradition but extending towards an exploration in which structure (the foundation of composition in the deciphering of natural patterns) determines everything: perspective, the twists and the turns of forms, the reflection and the refraction of light (color itself), and the mystery that atmosphere adds to the whole. There is something astonishing in his achievement of significance through mere gravity or lack thereof."

Carlos Ulises Mata

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