What lies beneath: There Must Be A Song That Doesn't Remind Me Of You
There Must Be A Song That Doesn't Remind Me Of You by Charlie Day, oil on board, courtesy of the artist
He gatecrashes a party, spots her and loves her at first sight. That's Sunday. They marry the next day; on Tuesday, at dawn, they part and on Thursday they're both dead. Ah, Romeo. Ah, Juliet. Or Ilsa and Rick? She gets on that plane in Casablanca, wishing she didn't love him so much. But at least they'll always have Paris. On Valentine's Day, let's hear it for romantic love. And the soundtrack should remind us that the sentimental things apply as time goes by. A fully-orchestrated arrangement of Lara's Theme from Dr Zhivago sweeps us across a snowy Russian landscape and remember Andy Williams crooning Where Do I Begin? as we watched Ali MacGraw die young in Love Story?
Artist Charlie Day, born London 1970, ex-actor, model, stand-up comic, is a self-confessed true romantic.
The title There Must Be A Song That Doesn't Remind Me Of You, is from the Louis Armstrong song There Must Be A Way and captures deep, lonely feelings. But "The Louis Armstrong is about a lost love. My painting is about my love. When I first met my now wife, I would send her songs on Skype, a new kind of mix tape. The painting is of this imaginary 'actual' tape and the 'you' is the painter Tori Day." And your kind of music? "It's usually Morrissey or David Bowie, always playing in our studio." And your song? "Our song is Lorelei by The Pogues."
He's painted his Grandpa's cigarette case, a glass of milk, a camera, a matchbox because "I think small things are important. I like the objects at the edge of grand paintings, the items on the desk in a portrait of some great figure. They speak to me more."
Inspired by Michaël Borremans, Goya, Velázquez, Manet, "because their brushmarks are very much brushmarks, as well as indicating the actual thing," that painterly quality is also evident here. Small things. Big sounds. That little, hard, plastic, grey cassette tape, containing huge, warm feelings and romantic moments, prove that love is in the air.
Charlie Day shows with his wife Tori - a two-hander - at London's Studio One Gallery in July. www.charliedayart.co.uk