The Pilgrim’s Progress inspires hyper realistic art in the new Glass Tank exhibition

Monday, 02 October 2017

Progress Andrew Holmes 800x450

An exhibition inspired by John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress has opened in the Glass Tank gallery today (Monday 2 October).

Entitled Progress, the exhibition will display a set of 20, hand-drawn black and white realist images and texts which update the 1678 allegory which is regarded as one of the most significant works of English literature. 

While many know of his first book, very few know of Bunyan’s second which describes Pilgrim’s wife’s trials. In Progress, Pilgrim’s wife is re-imagined as a female private detective driving through the sub-prime landscape of California, observing the locations of the original trials. 

The artist, Professor Andrew Holmes, from the School of Architecture at Oxford Brookes University created the work. He said, “Progress challenges American stereotypes. It explores the disparity in American life between myth and reality, past and present, and the friction between progress and tradition.”

Progress exhibition by Andrew Holmes 800x450The drawings are seen in the context of markedly sombre and austere black and white photographic prints that depict the surrounding landscape. Nature is seen as dark, intimidating and threatening rather than benign. 

Read more about Progress on the downloadable ArtRabbit app.

On Monday 9 October at 6pm, Andrew will be holding an event titled An Artist Talks: Big Bertha, Bo Diddley and the Ton Up Boys in the John Henry Brookes Lecture Theatre.  Andrew will talk about the influences of his work over 66 years, which encompasses drawing, printmaking, photography, film and design. 

His work explores the apparently anonymous mobile infrastructure of cities, in particular the interstate system – the largest designed object in the world. Andrew will talk about Progress and its connection with the work of Albrecht Durer, Ross Macdonald and Ansel Adams. 

The exhibition is free and open Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm, until Friday 29 October. The Glass Tank is a unique exhibition space located on the ground floor of the Abercrombie building on the Headington Campus. 

More information about free events and exhibitions at Oxford Brookes University can be found on the Events webpages.

Progress Glass Tank 800x450