Point Line Surface Solid


Alec Mackenzie & Dan Miller

The beginning was a blank where there appeared inexplicably a spot which stretched into a line, which flowed into a plane, which folded into a solid, which cast a shadow, which is what we see. This set of elements – point, line, surface, solid, simulacrum – conceived as contentless except in their own-nature

– Thomas McEvilley, Inside the White Cube, p.11

David Dale Gallery & Studios presents POINT/ LINE/ SURFACE/ SOLID, an exhibition of new work by Glasgow based artists, Alec Mackenzie and Dan Miller. POINT/ LINE/ SURFACE/ SOLID addresses the ways in which Mackenzie and Miller interpret the inherited history of conceptualism and minimalism. Through duplication and repetition, each artist creates near mathematical parameters within which patterns and relationships develop. Mackenzie and Miller question the conventional vocabulary of visual representation, instilling their own elemental semantics.

Mackenzie’s work utilises basic materials, props and mechanisms that explore the ways in which perception may be illustrated through durational means. His large-scale kinetic wall drawings address such methods through his attempt to create visual closed circuit loops through graphic shorthand and symbols. These monochromatic moving drawings are an irreverent and abstract stance on the set of components that comprise traditional drawing methods. There is a sculptural tenet to Mackenzie’s practice, through the contingency of action and sequential reiteration; his work lends itself to being in a constant flux of modification.

Miller’s work exudes minimalistic tendencies along with a balanced sense for the mathematical. Utilising the x/y axis, Miller composes symmetrical grids of dots, lines and polygons. His paintings are an equilibrium between surface and form, where the repetitive patterns of geometric shapes are correlated with the shape and configuration of the canvases. Miller’s paintings are enigmatically positioned between the readings of graphical codes and the spatial depths of paint on canvas.

Superseding the traditional use of perspective and the picture plane as the basis for composing visual representation, or the use of the graph in mathematical terms as a clarification of outcomes. Miller’s utilisation of graphical delineation defeats all sense of ellipsis. His work relies on an analysis that stems from duplication and cross-referencing. Brought together by a complementary abbreviation of sorts and a graphical sense of the pictorial, Miller confronts the viewer with a sense of transparency versus opacity and encryption versus decoding.

Both Mackenzie’s and Miller’s work spurs the misgiving that reduction creates clarity. Caught within the patterns of perspective and accomplishing an ethos that lends itself to Pythagorean ideologies, POINT/ LINE/ SURFACE/ SOLID plots coordinates on an exponential historical vector.

Alec Mackenzie lives and works in Glasgow. He graduated from The Glasgow School of Art in 2005. Recent exhibitions include:Friends, Colleagues, Comrades, Galleri GI. Lejre, Roskilde, Denmark 2010, and Roy G. Bivolo, Southside Studios, Glasgow, 2009.

Dan Miller lives and works in Glasgow. He graduated from The Glasgow School of Art, 2002. Recent exhibitions and residencies include: No Noise, The Agency Gallery, London, 2011; CPH AIR – Copenhagen Artist in Residence, The Factory for Art and Design, Copenhagen, 2010; Neil Clements, Dan Miller, Tom Varley, Galerie Mark Müller, Zurich and Still Life, in association with SWG3, The Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art, 2010.


Max Slaven


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