Flotsam Painting Fire Plane
Bickerton’s fascination with landscape can be traced back to some of his earliest works. With a childhood spent near bodies of water, and as a life-long surfer himself, Ashley’s relationship with land invariably includes the surrounding seas and oceans.
His obsession with “the earth/sky binary, matter and emptiness” translates through these surrealist works in the gentle formations of a coastline or horizon, and the undulating waves washing up detritus along the shore.
Though Bickerton describes these as ‘residues of lives lived’, he rejects sentimental or ecological readings – asserting that the summation of human and natural elements as seen in this series, actually constitute beautiful things in their own right.
Rising to prominence in New York’s East Village scene in the early 1980s, Ashley Bickerton spearheaded an alternative art movement alongside Jeff Koons, Peter Halley, and Meyer Vaisman, heralding a new style of geometric painting that rebelled against Neo-Expressionist trends. In 1993, Bickerton left New York and moved to Bali, Indonesia, where he lives and works today, having observed and experienced radical changes on the island over the last 30 years. Bickerton’s work explores the fantasy of a tropical island paradise and its reality as a de-cultured touristic locale that has been reconstructed to feed the westernized paradise ideal. Bickerton’s work has featured at the 1989 Whitney Biennial and the 44th Venice Biennale (1990), as well as in the public collections of MoMA, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art; and Tate Britain, London, amongst others.
beach flotsam, oil and acrylic on canvas with plywood, glass and stainless steel
157 x 213 x 20.5 cm