Heresy or Codswallop
The title piece for the show features an amalgamation of ‘Mitochondrial Eve’ and the ‘Silver Ladies’ – a garishly painted character with grotesque features that bastardise the conventional constructs of beauty, while still seducing the viewer. The woman reaches a hand outward, as if to touch the viewer and extend the fantasy by crossing the divide between lived and imagined experiences.
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.
Oil and acrylic on canvas
190 x 179 x 8.5 cm