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Danielle Clough: Some Strings Attached

Posted on August 18 2023

Danielle Clough: Some Strings Attached
September 1 – October 1

 Paradigm Gallery + Studio is pleased to present Some Strings Attached, a solo show of new embroidered paintings by South African artist, Danielle Clough. Some Strings Attached will feature Clough’s signature watercolor and embroidered portraits and extensions of her ongoing Girl Dust series in print and wallpaper form. Clough indulges in saturated color and texture to bring life to developed portraits of beautiful beings lost in thought or holding a gaze. Their likeness expands with colored thread tactfully sewn in the background, a moment in time distorted by fiber movement. Clough is utilizing the medium of embroidery as a narrative for tenderness and memory, with some emotional bonds attached throughout. Some Strings Attached will be on view on the second floor of the Paradigm Arts Building (12 N 3rd Street) from September 1 through October 1, 2023 with a public opening reception on Friday, September 1 from 6:00-8:00pm.

Danielle Clough’s exhibition Some Strings Attached explores expression composition in her portrait series, each carefully formed in a vibrant, and colorful palette, up close and intimate. Based in her hometown of Cape Town, South Africa, her practice began with a background in advertising and fashion design, which involved interpreting images by their feel and their formation, whether it is a film still or a captivating advertisement in a magazine. This skill led to an intuitive process where Clough was able to explore the relationship of light and color in a wide range of subjects, like still life and abstraction, thus becoming the basis for her newest collection highlighting her studies of the human figure. Her process-intensive portraits require carefully chosen materials to inform the sentimental connections she creates, juxtaposing the fluidity and spontaneity of watercolor with the patience and deliberate nature of stitching. The sharp contrast of solid thread against open forms of watercolor creates a tension of feeling present but fragmented, a feeling Clough is familiar with. “The journey of creating this body of work has been finding comfort in missing my family and what it means to be between spaces consistently, being free of judgment and allowed to be oneself despite the pieces that are not perfect or complete.” Clough equates the fulfillment her art practice gives to the love she has for family living overseas. Although they are close in spirit, the distance gives Clough a sense of feeling incomplete, just like when she visits them, she is happy but away from her home, therefore unable to be present in both spaces. The ever-constant feeling of longing is reflected in her work, paying excruciating detail to facial expressions, relationship with light, and finding meaning in small moments. For her ongoing Girl Dust series, Clough holds on to fiber scraps in her studio as remnants of her practice, still holding value outside of a finished art piece. She makes a careful arrangement of thread, textiles, and the occasional pompom to create stunning portals of texture and color. Some Strings Attached will feature the first instance of Clough combining her portrait series with her Girl Dust series as she will be arranging a figure within the scraps of the creative process.

Although Clough’s work has been exhibited in group shows at Paradigm in the past, her first solo collection with the gallery has been a long time in the making. Expanding to the new location in Old City has opened the doors to find additional ways to collaborate with and to bring international artists to Philadelphia. Clough’s exhibition will be supplemented with embroidery workshops the artist will be teaching in person on the third floor of the Paradigm Arts Building, aligning with Paradigm’s mission of supporting artists and advancing their careers.
Friday, September 1, 2023
6:00 - 8:00 PM

RSVP here*
*Requested but not required

Thursdays • 10 AM – 6 PM
Fridays • 10 AM – 6 PM
Saturdays • 11 AM – 6 PM
Sundays • 11 AM – 5 PM
And 7 days a week by appointment.

12 N 3rd St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

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About Danielle Clough
The threads that link the ancient and the modern are an excellent starting point to describe the work of Cape Town-based artist, Danielle Clough. Danielle’s colorful, delicate embroidery celebrates the joining of the old with the new in a wistful and playful manner that is thoroughly modern in approach, yet nostalgic at heart. She utilizes a craft that is perceived as archaic but takes inspiration from current pop culture icons and the timeless beauty of nature. Her choice of materials also reflects this fascination with time and her vibrant picture-scapes are just as likely to adorn a vintage tennis racquet as they are a rusty chain link fence or a brand-new pair of Gucci sneakers.

Danielle learned the ins and outs of creative expression at The Red and Yellow School where she studied art direction and graphic design. She then began her career as an artist in the fields of visual art, digital design, and the making of bright fluffy things. She has been profiled by Instagram, Colossal, CNN, Beautiful Bizarre, Hi-Fructose and the Creators Project, and has been published in the New York Times, Casa de Jardim, Hemslöjd, Evening Standard, Inspirations and Homespun amongst others. Her work has caught the attention of prominent clients such as Gucci, Adobe, The African Innovation Foundation, the United Nations, Origins, Nike, Kanye West, and Drew Barrymore.

Danielle’s work has been shown in various group shows in South Africa and in Moscow, London and around the United States.

About Paradigm Gallery + Studio
Paradigm Gallery + Studio® was established in 2010 by co-founders and curators, Jason Chen and Sara McCorriston. The gallery exhibits meaningful, process-intense contemporary artwork by emerging and mid-career artists from around the world. In 2022, Paradigm announced the opening of its new 5-story, 7,000 sq. ft. home, The Paradigm Arts Building, in Old City, Philadelphia. Now open to the public, the building boasts multiple floors of exhibition space, integrated in-house design and printmaking, a dedicated events floor, and art advisory offices. With this, Chen and McCorriston expanded their vision for the greater Philadelphia arts community. The gallery is at the heart of this vision, anchoring Paradigm’s overall mission of increasing access to the commercial art world, supporting artists and advancing their careers, and collaborating with like-minded partners to build a more equitable, sustainable arts economy for all.